The Saddest Place I Know

yellow brick road

It’s partly because I love the Wizard of Oz but also because I really want to believe in the magic that comes when people have fun. This section of the Yellow Brick Road formed part of a Wizard of Oz theme park that was sadly abandoned in the early 1980s. So far as I can tell, none of the attractions have been dismantled and nature has been allowed to take its course – consequently the Yellow Brick Road has become overgrown.

To me, though, this picture is much more poignant than just a story of an abandoned theme park. In the original story, the Yellow Brick Road was how Dorothy found her way to the Emerald City, and from there found her way home. She faced challenges but also made friends. There was something distinctly magical about following the Yellow Brick Road, and seeing it in a state of disrepair makes me unbearably sad.

What this picture says to me is that there’s no place for magic in the world anymore; children aren’t interested in following a path to a magical future where wicked witches and great wizards do battle for control of Munchkin land. If it doesn’t have a Pokemon character waiting to be found, you may as well forget it (and don’t get me started on Pokemon Go – tool of the Cybermen if I’ve ever seen one). What this world lacks is that little bit of magic, and if I were able to, the first thing I’d fix would be the Yellow Brick Road.

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