Saturday, May 10, 2014

North Wilkesboro Speedway

On Friday, 9 May 2014 (a beautiful spring day), the Ancient Nomad pulled up to North Wilkesboro Speedway just hoping to take a few exterior shots and possibly to get a glimpse of the track. An older gentleman was mowing grass beside the track on a Toro riding lawnmower (the kind with two handles for steering). He saw me and drove up. I asked if he planned mowing that large field with such a small mower. He said sure. Then he said come on and gestured toward the track. He unlocked the padlock on the main gate and we walked into one of the shrines of NASCAR. I could not believe my luck. His name is Paul Call, and he has been the track’s caretaker since it closed in 1996. He lives in a small house beside the track and has been told by the track owners that he can stay there for life. He owns 40 acres across US 421 -- mows his hay there and gives it away. Paul said the broom sage would always grow back, and that the United States was becoming just the rich and the poor.