Sunday, December 10

Sfumato Depreciation

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Eighty years ago, in 1927, the Pennsylvania Railroad moved its main station from the very center of Lancaster city to a spot on the border. It was, as pictures of the day show, an unambitious new building. And for eight decades it's been worn into nubs by countless travelers. Twenty five years ago, Harrison Ford's hand grabbed this post in a movie called "Witness". Maybe they don't want to repair it out of sentimentality? Perhaps it's like the teenager who refuses to wash her fingers for days after touching a rock-star idol?
The station still works, and probably will until it tumbles. But its workers seem to love her. They've got the inside merrily decorated for the Christmas season. But I guess this little pictured post's beyond shining. Subsidized roads and airports have stolen the travelers away, and a financially struggling AMTRAK won't be soon around with polish.
For this little guy, at least, it doesn't look to be a happy newel year.

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