This chair was abandoned in a garage workshop. It was sturdy enough to receive a couple of custom coats of paint along the way, but in the end it was not deemed valuable enough to take along to the next residence.
The immediate surroundings.
I’m not sure what it was used for, though. Perhaps it sat at the edge of a dinner table decades ago, but I didn’t find any companion chairs. Nor could I discern any regular use for any of the items in this garage. It just seemed to be a storehouse for all things broken or obsolete.
The bigger picture.
I can picture a crafty new homeowner turning this into a garage/workshop: it’d be a sweet place to work on your hotrod while somewhat shielded from the elements. There’s even a heater. And now it’s completely clean.
The freshest part of the house.
Cats had taken over this home. The litter box had been abandoned long ago, and the cats made their foul mark in every room. The previous owner smoked indoors. Garbage festered in ripped bags. Rancid food slowly decayed on the counters.
And yet, through it all, a curiously strong undercurrent of mint tickled my olfactory bulb, leading me like a ghostly finger into the basement. There, on a ledge in the living room, this tin of Altoids sent its wintergreen signal in an effort to combat the myriad stenches all around. Thank you, Altoids, for freshening up an otherwise stinky job.
Foreboding or inviting?
While exploring Guatemala’s La Recoleccion church a few weeks ago, I came across this locked passage. Closed doors have always held for me an allure of the unknown, an the addition of a skull and crossbones adds to the intrigue. This doorway, park officials told me, leads to the church’s catacombs, as well as an underground tunnel that is said to reach Antigua’s central plaza.
I didn’t go in. Instead, I imagined the burial ceremonies held there for the clergy, the hurried footsteps late in the night of tardy residents heading home, the resonant echo of solemn marches.
There would be very little to see here anyway. The church has been officially abandoned since 1773, and just about all artifacts left behind have been collected, hoarded, or repurposed. Two-hundred and forty years is a long time to do a trashout. We get most of ours done in less than a day.