They don't build cities like they used to—which is, to say, by simply backfilling and constructing on top of older architecture, leaving behind a layered time machine just ripe for adventure. The idea that some very old cities, like Rome, are three stories taller than they originally were—that the ground you walk on today is not really, precisely, the ground at all—is still completely mind-blowing to me.
That's why I love stories like this one from NPR, where professional explorer Erling Kagge accompanies amateur adventurer Steve Duncan on a 25-mile journey through the sewers of New York City. It's no Golden Palace of Nero, but there are some little historical thrills.
Notes from the Vimeo video page:
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Steve and I just completed another underground expedition with Norwegian explorer Erling Kagge (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erling_Kagge). It was featured in a three page article on the front page of the NY Times metro section and was written by Alan Feuer (nytimes.com/2011/01/02/nyregion/02underground.html). We were also covered by NPR's Jacki Lyden whose report will be aired on 1/2/11 and posted on NPR's site (npr.org/2011/01/02/132482428/into-the-tunnels-exploring-the-underside-of-nyc).
Shot on a canon 5d mkii with canon 24 f/1.4 (version 1) with the zacuto rapid fire, Zoom H4N and a sennheiser g2 wireless lav. The zacuto was really great at being there when I needed it but also staying out of the way.