A Strange Force Field Found at Sarobia

Photo of a tree with a hole in it.

Laughing Tree or Hobbit Hole?

The weekly trek around Sarobia brought about an interesting phenomenon over this past weekend. Something different awaits me always during my typical snooping around the grounds of the old Logan estate, which seems like such a magical, mystical place.

On the way to Logan’s Garden, off the beaten paths of the state park that now occupies the land, I squeezed past the hundreds of picnickers and frolickers from nearby Philly who were escaping the brutal, summer heat; swimming in the public pool, barbecuing steaks, hot dogs and hamburgers in the woods; seemingly all were having a good time.

Most likely, the majority of those happy, Sunday-afternoon campers didn’t know about the remaining structures of Sarobia’s fluorescence, undoubtedly a good thing to prevent vandalizing what’s left.

Look at what happened to HitchBOT, with meeting its demise in Philadelphia. I’d be afraid of finding Humpty Dumpty off the garden wall and on the ground in pieces, with the park’s not being able to put him back together again.

Humpty Dumpty sits atop the wall at Logan's Garden.

Humpty Dumpty sits atop the wall at Logan’s Garden.

As can be seen in the above photo, the concrete statue is well-cracked as it is.

While I rounded the corner at the restrooms and water fountain, a mandatory stop for a drink, a laughing tree greeted me afterward, whose mouth I normally looked upon as an arboreal, hobbit’s hole.

Laughing Tree on the Path to Logan's Garden

Laughing Tree on the Path to Logan’s Garden

A requisite photograph from up close—but not too close for what might pop out at me—is pasted below. Would you want to poke your nose inside there?
Gaping Hole in Tree (click for full size)

Gaping Hole in Tree (click for full size)

The only full-standing, intact structure leftover from Sarobia’s illustrious past, aside from the garden wall and parts of the inner-garden, is the last of the thirteen guest quarters, remaining on the property. This one sits before the entrance into the garden.


Front of Guesthouse

Front of Guesthouse

The cabin is used now for the park’s storage. It’s hard to see what’s inside by looking through the sheets of dusty Plexiglas, covering all the windows sashes, really another good idea to avoid vandalism.

For a bevy of photos, showing the garden wall and layout of the site, please click here.

Western sundial is seen in the center of the above photo.

Western sundial is seen in the center of the above photo.

Eastern Sundial

Eastern Sundial

Once inside Logan’s Garden, I perform a ritual usually of checking the time on the sundials, mostly in the afternoon when the sun is high above the fenced-in area. Pictures from this past weekend’s rite, as can be seen by clicking on the link previous to the photos of the sundials’ bases above, proved the hand-sculpted, time-telling devices were as accurate as can be.

After noting the accuracy of the western sundial with my compass, I attempted to line up magnetic north along the eastern sundial’s slot, as had been done on the former. Take note on the picture below of where the needle of the compass is pointing. The red tip tells where magnetic north is.

Eastern Sundial with Compass, Pointing to Magnetic North.

Eastern Sundial with Compass, Pointing to Magnetic North.

Upon my moving the compass to align its axis on the sundial’s slot, the needle moved away from magnetic north and pointed northwesterly, as if the compass was being effected by a strange force field from that area of the sundial’s face, as seen below:
Eastern Sundial with compass now forced to point northwestly.

Eastern Sundial with compass now forced to point northwesterly.

Unfortunately I forgot to take a photo as to where the compass pointed truly to magnetic north again on the right side of that slot; however, I did check the time by utilizing a simpler method, using my pocket knife. Incidentally, the photo stamp on the following picture documented the time as being 14:30:51, pretty darn close for rock and roll:

On my next trip out, I’ll investigate this phenomenon a little closer and document it on video. Surely there must be a scientific explanation for this interesting quirk of nature.

The Delaware River and Philadelphia Skyline (roughly 16 miles /26 kilometers away), as seen from Logan's Point.

The Delaware River and Philadelphia Skyline (roughly 16 miles /26 kilometers away), as seen from Logan’s Point.


About Mike Slickster

As an early retiree with an honorary doctorate degree from the proverbial "School of Hard Knocks," this upcoming author with a lot of free time on his hands utilizes his expansive repertoire for humorous yet tragic, wildly creative writing that contains years of imaginative fantasy, pure nonsense, classic slapstick, extreme happiness and searing heartbreak; gathered by a wealth of personal experiences throughout his thrilling—sometimes mundane or unusually horrid—free-spirited, rock-'n'-roller-coaster ride around our beloved Planet Earth. Mike Slickster's illustrious quest continues, living now in Act Three of his present incarnation, quite a bit on the cutting edge of profundity and philosophical merriment as seen through his colorful characters, most notably evident in the amusing Thirty Days Across the Big Pond series, all of which can be found at Lulu.com.
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2 Responses to A Strange Force Field Found at Sarobia

  1. Jack Maher says:

    Mike, In the garden there was a stubby sitting little granite man that RRL would sit on the ground nearby and communicate with. His name was Mr. Rogers no connection with the TV Mr. Rogers.

  2. Jack, did you ever eavesdrop on any of the conversations? I guess that figurine is long gone. It’s not there now. Probably stolen, eh?

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