Almost getting nabbed during our last trip led to some creative thinking on how to scale the "anti-climb" fence quicker. My friend Nick came up with a simple, yet very effective solution using simple climbing gear; we returned to Taunton once again, but this time we'd do it right. Under the cover of complete darkness (instead of just the early morning), we put the gear to the test and it worked beautifully as we scrambled up the fence like squirrels and into the hulking Kirkbride building.
Perhaps it worked too well, I thought, as we waited for the sun to slowly rise over the sleepy town. And then we waited some more. We shuffled through the empty wards in a daze, as the journey to Massachusetts through the night left us with no sleep and all our adrenaline had left our veins. At about 9:00AM, the bare wire frame beds that were left in the wards really started to appear comfortable... I had to catch an hour of sleep, even though this was such and incredible place. I brushed some paint chips off of one that wasn't too rusty, and my lumpy backpack full of gear served as a poor excuse for a pillow. Bizarre dreams ensued.
I awoke from my uncomfortable nap to find a summer storm brewing on the roof line, and watched it pass over the old hospital. The quiet building suddenly roared with noise as a heavy rain pounded on the roof and echoed through the barren halls. Water quickly found its way inside, and those familiar dripping sounds joined the cacophony. The atmosphere was incredibly peaceful, even as the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health police patrolled the perimeter road again and again with great tenacity. I met back up with my friend with renewed energy and we crawled into some dusty places that had been long forgotten in that old building...