Years ago, while I was visiting my parents, my mother took me to a place called Renda, not very far from where they lived. It was several houses, not really a village yet, all abandoned years ago. Some roofs had already crumbled, nature already had begun to reclaim the territory. Doors and windows, where still present, were open, so we ventured inside the small houses.
Piles of furniture, dirt and, well, stuff, were everywhere. It almost seemed, that whoever had lived here, had left this place in a hurry, just grabbing only those things they could carry whith both their hands. It was a very strange feeling walking through these rooms and wondering what had happened so that this place got deserted.
In one of the rooms, there was an old table, covered by dust and rubbish. On one of the sides, there was a drawer - I could not resist and opened it, to see what was inside. I saw a whole lot of personal documents, like insurance policies, letters from the utilities company etc. - on top of all of this, there was a passport. The contents of this drawer really made me very sad, as I asked myself what had happened that no one seemed to care about this stuff anymore, that probably once was very important to their owner. I for myself wouldn't throw away or just ignore my parent's passports, for example, so this was something I just could not grasp.
Many years have passed since that day, and I never went back to this place. A few times, I still wondered what had happened here and how those people lived, when this place was still their home. But I never got there again. Until recently.
My mother had died last year here while on a visit in Germany. After the funeral, my father went back to their house, where I came to visit him some time later. While preparing for the trip, I remembered Renda - and how me and my Mother were touched by the traces of the lives of those who had lived there before. I felt the urge to come back to Renda and see how it has changed, in a way to feel closer to my mother.
So I packed my camera and went there alone. Walking the path from where I had parked the car, the strange and spooky feeling was back - it is strange to walk between abandoned houses all alone. I spent some time there, taking pictures and connecting to the images in my head from the first visit. Someone had walled up the entrance of one house, while someone else already had teared that down again. I didn't touch anything this time, just taking pictures and sucking up the feeling of the place. The table with the documents was gone, so I like to believe that whoever took it finally did care about those documents and the life they represent, and took them for that reason. After I took my photos, I walked back, feeling thad I did what I had to do and that I now can leave this place resting for the next couple of years.
See the photos here.