Underground Societies You Probably Didn’t Know
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Few of us would ever consider leaving the comfort of our homes or apartments to live in the confines of a dark and dank environment, lined with spiders, bugs, rodents and other creepy critters. Yet there are those who roam and live beneath us in twisting, winding underground tunnels that were created for completely other uses. It’s a way of life for some; a way of survival for others. Here are five stories where home sweet home is a state of mind.
1.While pulling the one-armed bandit or rolling the die, it’s doubtful any of the gamblers taking in the casinos or hot spots on the Las Vegas strip are thinking about the people far below them in the city’s underbelly. The 200 miles of flood tunnels under Sin City are home to more than 1,000 people. Small “homes” are created by some with crates, wall hangings and even a library of books that are kept above the damp floors. Many within the underground city suffer from depression, addiction, and, for some, sheer hopelessness.
2.The beautiful architecture and landscaping on the surface of Bucharest, Romania doesn’t come close to giving tourists a glimpse of what’s going on underneath the city. The area’s sewer system has become home for society’s outcasts and drug addicts – nearly all of them HIV-positive and many with tuberculosis. The underground population will typically lean up against heating pipes to stay warm. Many also snort glue to get a rush of warmth. Young and old alike live within these dark tunnels.
3.The extreme heat in an Australian town has driven most of the population underground. Some 60 percent of the 3,500 people who live in Coober Pedy, has escaped the 100-plus-degree temperatures by burrowing into hills and carving out cave-like homes. Living in caves and underground spaces became so popular that several bed and breakfasts and hotels were constructed underground. The town is known for much of the world’s Opal mining.
4. Gay and transgender lifestyles in Jamaica don’t go over well at all. Many of them are forced to live in underground sewers with rats, trash and floodwaters. They must sleep on damp mattresses or cardboard boxes. Should they venture out and are discovered, they face knife attacks by citizens and are even pursued by the police. Legally, in Jamaica, gay male sex is punishable by 10 years of hard labor.
5. The Rat Tribe of Beijing, as they are called, is looked down on by others living in the Chinese city. But the tribe, number about 1 million, must make their homes underground because of the higher priced housing on the surface. Their rooms down under are dark and damp. They empty their bedpans into communal toilets. They pay 50 cents to take a shower in the underground and emerge to the surface to strive to make small amounts of money, hoping to one day own a piece of the Chinese dream.
That’s all for today. What are your thoughts about people living underground? Let us know in the comments section below. Be sure to like us and subscribe for more stories like this. Get addicted to the good stuff.