thru Oct. 30th
Tue.-Thurs. 7:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m.
Fri.-Sat. 6:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 8:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m.
Tours start behind the Rio Grande building in SLC
(300 S. 500 W.)
Thursday night, I figured I’d crash at home, curl up on the couch and watch an episode of Fringe. But Clem had other plans.
As evening approached, I began to feel restless, so I headed for the Rio Grande station in Salt Lake City. I wasn’t the only one in search of adventure. A small group had gathered around a bus behind the building. The bus driver sidled up to me and asked me if I had bought a ticket. Much to my surprise I found that I had.
“I can’t believe people actually choose to do this,” he said to me. I pointed out that he was driving the bus.
“Yeah, but I’m staying safely inside it,” he replied.
I went into the station to use the restroom before boarding the bus. Old-fashioned sinks, circa 1910, were lined up in the center of the room. Facing each other on opposing walls were two massive mirrors. I dried my hands, smoothed back a few stray strands of hair, and adjusted the brim of my hat.
Wait! I’m not wearing a hat!
Another glance in the mirror showed me it was simply a fleeting reflection of something that had moved just beyond my range of vision.
I rejoined the group of intrepid explorers of the supernatural and boarded the bus. Our tour guide told us stories about the Alta Club, Hotel Victoria, the suicide saloon, and leaving a tribute at the end of the bar for the ghostly barkeep. But all of this seemed like only a precursor, an overture before the curtain went up. We tramped through Salt Lake City’s dark and haunted graveyard and heard the story of Lily Gray, and all the while, I could feel him just beyond the edge of existence, waiting impatiently.
When the bus made its way past the Marriott Library—where he had been known to pick-up a coed or two—and headed toward Fort Douglas, the impatience became mine. He was drawing me closer, and even though he had a reputation as an incorrigible ladies’ man—in both of his lives—I knew I would answer his call.
The bus gave a hydraulic hiss and lowered itself to the curb. I disembarked with the rest of the crowd, hurried up the wooden steps to the porch and paced the planks. He was nowhere to be seen. I walked around the corner and peered through the metal gates at the artillery guns. Not so much as an orb of ectoplasm. I lingered as long as I could, and finally joined the last of the stragglers as we boarded the bus.
Had I displeased him in someway? Had he sensed a shadow of doubt in my mind? My transcendental tryst was not to be.
By the time, the bus returned to the Rio Grande station, I the felt master of myself once more. I bade my fellow travelers farewell and headed back to hearth and home.