Since I had to pass through Arizona to get to New Mexico, I set out from the hotel in Tucson early and ended up taking a detour to see Tombstone. I didn’t actually get to see the O.K. Corral. You have to pay to see it, by buying a ticket to the reenactment of the famous shootout. I didn’t want to stay in Tombstone that long. I had miles to go. So I saw the wall around the O.K. Corral.
What I am saying is that Tombstone, a real part of the real history of the American West, is now mostly a tourist trap.
That is not to say that it isn’t worth stopping at. I got there early, and had most of the town to myself at first.
And I really enjoyed my short stay.
There were places where you could almost forget the tourist trap element.
You could almost imagine the town in the late 1800’s.
You could squint, and imagine what it was like, with horses and wagons and stagecoaches and cowboys and sheriffs.
But the illusion was transitory. That isn’t a bordello. That is an ice cream shop.
There are constant reminders that history did indeed happen right where you are standing.
Uh, that is not a real stagecoach.
We all know that the real Tombstone cemetery is called Boot Hill. That is a miniature golf course.
And why was that ever really a thing?