There are two houses in this village that fascinate me in their state of disuse.
One, my favorite, is definitely abandoned and I find it baffling as it exudes a distinctly happy air.
I can clearly see the laundry being put out to dry on the window's line, I can smell something sweet baking in the oven...even if they are just phantom memories, not my own.
And the other? Well, I am not so certain. While the many scales of paint date to a more recent era, it somehow seems far less lively than its counterpart. I have never heard the front door slam nor seen a light left burning to brighten up the night. But perhaps it is inhabited, only very quietly so. The oldest resident in the village is 105 years old and his home also seems quite subdued despite the thin trail of smoke rising from the chimney. Regardless, I always want to sling my arm around the proverbial shoulders of these houses if only I could.
For I find them quite beautiful, ragged tooth gaps and all.
I can feel the stares on my back from my fellow villagers as I lean in close to put their details into my lens. Their confusion as to why I would choose such forlorn ministers to study amidst other proud ambassadors is practically noisy. "Why isn't she photographing 'Le Chateau'?" I lean in closer and keep coming back.
The sun is setting and I have just brought the dogs back in from their walk. But I head back out towards the closest house, the abandoned one, to try and answer that question. A window on the top floor is open to all seasons and the iron horseshoe above the door is hanging the wrong way down. And yet...there are possibilities within this house and the other as well. I think that is as good of an answer as I can define. For me, there is more of the essence of this heart-achingly beautiful region amidst their histories than what any self-conscious mansion could provide. With its rough-shod and yet enduring charm, how I love the possibilities of Provence.
And we all need possibilities, yes? I have mentioned the amazing Ellie from Have Some Decorum before and it delights me that so many of you now read her regularly. Ellie has ALS and recently asked if we would be willing to sign a petition asking the FDA in the States to approve a new treatment for the disease on an accelerated basis. If you would care to sign the petition, you may do so: here.
Have a wonderful weekend...