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Friday, February 29, 2008

Old doors: wondering what's behind them

Like many travellers I have an obsession with photographing doors. It started in Mexico many years ago and has stayed with me throughout my travels. The more colorful, faded, and older they are the better. If there's paint peeling off them, wonderful. If there are wooden shutters somewhere on the facade that match, perfect. Like the painted blue chairs in Greece, antique wooden doors are something we associate with atmospheric neighborhoods, characterful back streets, ramshackle buildings... it's about having those romantic notions of what an old village should be like satisfied, about having those travel expectations met. But for me, it's something more as well. I also want to take a look behind them. I want my curiosity about what's inside sated. I dream of an amiable little old lady in a headscarf and apron opening the door and inviting me in for tea and showing me around her home. If she offers me her photo album, I'll be in heaven. My ideal 'tour' is one where a guide shows me around a village or town for a day, inviting me into the homes of the locals. I want to be a fly on the wall and see how people live their lives. But then I'll be just as happy to join them for lunch. And I won't mind one bit doing the dishes afterwards.

1 comment:

Marianne Cushing said...

Hi Lara, I just found your blog and after wandering around found this post on doors. Struck close to home. I have been obsessed with doors and windows for many years, even have paintings and photos of them all over my house. I didn't know this was a common travel writer passion, and haven't thought about why I love them. I thought it was my artist side, but maybe it's my travel and writing side. I think they make me feel welcome as much as hopeful that there is something beautiful waiting for me on the other side.