Maria and I were returning from the romeria in Vilalfor the other weekend, most of the pictures of which I have yet to edit (what DO I do with my time? I wonder that myself!), and as we trundled our way slowly round the bends we spotted an old house, perched alongside a vineyard, overlooking the road, and decided to stop to take a look, since our plans for the day were turning out to be quite fluid.
It had obviously been abandoned many, many years ago. The roof tiles were gone, save for one or two broken ones, and vines which were writhing their way along the exposed roof timbers had thick and sturdy branches. They clearly had time to grow like that.
We guessed this had probably been a goatherd’s shelter. It was no more than two rooms, one of which we couldn’t get at because of the growth around it. The air was sweet with the scent of wild aniseed around the doorway, and a peek inside revealed that although no-one lived there any longer it clearly was the scene of local lovers’ trysts.
These old dwellings were dark places, small windows on the sides with least sun and thick walls protected from the heat in days long before air conditioning, and kept in the warmth from escaping on cool winter nights. Now there were just gaping holes, where windows and door had been, and the light poured in from above.
Most of the roof struts were withering and parched from long exposure to the sun, and just one had clearly been unseasoned wood. Magical, amber drops of resin, and who knows how many years they had taken to slowly drip their way along the timber, glowed in the sunlight.
Shadows of beams and slivers of light through the window space were beautiful, offering those glimpses of beauty you want to capture because you know how short-lived they will be. Of all the photos I took that day, these are my favorites.