...or tries to...

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Side ways


One a rare weekday out of the studio, I went for a short wander down one of my favorite side streets, an odd mix of renovated and abandoned houses, overgrown yards, holistic shops, restaurant backs, stray cats, bamboo and silver floss trees. It could be even more intricate inside those hedge-guarded gardens, but they keep to themselves. On humid summer afternoons, where the low clouds close everything in, sound exaggerates a little, so a mango dropping to the ground makes a theatrical splat.






This house is boarded up, but somebody still mows the lawn. I hadn't noticed it until today. It's straight out of Faulkner, Florida edition. Or the short story by Joyce Carol Oates about the woman who wakes up blind but thinks that daylight has died instead, and locks herself in forever. But it held some one's dreams, once, for a while.

10 comments:

TheEccentricLady said...

Hello there. I hate to see awesome old homes abandoned. What memories this house could tell, i'm sure!

Amy said...

Isn't it beautiful? I would love to know its story, especially since we don't really have all that many houses from the early 1900's here. It looks like Miss Havisham, doesn't it?

Daydreamer said...

I have always wondered what makes people abandon houses..... there are old ruins in the back woods of parts of Northern New England too.... but your photo has the faded lushness of wealth and grandeur left behind....on its way to becoming a truly haunted house.....
Your neighborhood looks fascinating!

Amy said...

You have so many wonderful old houses in New England! When we took our yearly vacation in Massachusetts we always stayed in a house that was built in the early 1700's from pirate's gold-so said the legend. I miss that kind of old house so much. We're mainly 1950's old here, so an old southern lady like this one is so rare. I wonder if I could find out more about her?

My neighborhood is a strange mix-some of it truly is strange-it's so many things at once, really great and not so great, but truly interesting. I've been here 12 years, but I still look at it like I just moved here..

Sans! said...

Are you sure the house is abandoned? The garden looked almost manicured..ok most garden looked that way to me because mine is like a jungle :).

Even in boarding the house up, they used painted wood. The owners are artists, like you? :).

Amy said...

It is a mystery, because someone does own it-but I've never seen it without the boards in place. Someone might be in there right now, living a privately interesting life. A true enigma of a home...

Amy said...

Update-I did manage to find out a bit about the house's history, that it was built in the early 1900's in the Bahamian style, that it was built for the couple that owned the town's first hardware, general sundry store, that the lady of the house ran the store next door to the general shop, selling ribbons, embroidery thread, buttons and ladies unmentionables. Later in the century, it was the home of a woman private eye, who is rumored to be the inspiration for Murder She Wrote. This is getting better and better, isn't it?

Sans! said...

O yes, almost like the series themselves :). You should explore more and see if you can find a secret hiding place or maybe a hidden entrance. The interior must be fascinating!

Amy said...

I've since read that it has a chandelier from Barcelona inside. That it's the oldest continuously privately owned residence in town. Plus, it was built in 1902, and survived two hurricanes in the 1920's alone, storms that completely destroyed the buildings around it. Quite a house.

Daydreamer said...

Wow, Amy! That's quite the History! I LOVE the stories like that about old buildings...... maybe that's why my Dollhouses are getting "stories" as well! Thanks for looking into that! Wouldn't you like to try to get a glimpse of that chandelier??? Don't get into trouble on my account...!! LOL!