Reading this gave me chills. I’m a sissy and when it comes to prisons, prison tales, and prison
shows I couldn’t imagine leading a life of crime.
OZ never made television
viewing pleasure for me. It’s too real, gritty and harsh. Though reading about famous defunct prisons like
Alcatraz and Devil’s
Island is often interesting I still find myself very uncomfortable with the idea of ever having to stay in one
of those institutions. If you, on the other hand think they can handle a night in the slammer, you might wish to check
out the West Virginia State Penitentiary.
Featured as a Roadside America Sight of the Week, the tour
runs about 45 minutes long, but the tour guard Tom, typically stretches it to twice the time. Filled with stories
about prisoners hurling urine and vomit onto the guards, others getting stabbed in the eye, and mock hangings it makes
for an intense day-trip. But Tom sometimes finds a couple of macho men and women in the pack who think
they could easily stay in the prison’s clean, but less than comfortable 5×7 foot cells for a night. I don’t believe
sleeping in the cells is part of the stay at the pen, but you can participate in their monthly “ghost hunt” sleep
over and sleep in the empty unlit buildings. Don’t expect too many amenities.