Some towns were barely touched by the “boomiest” boom Ireland never had. Today a small dog, waiting for his master to return from the match, is alone amongst empty shops, messy paint jobs and abandoned petrol pumps.
Some buildings change hands every few months; go from being a sweet shop to being a cafe, and back again. But other shop windows remain empty, like vacant faces where there should be a smile.
The lens is loving the wabi-sabi of it, the cracks in the doorways, the nostalgia of childhood memories. But there is quiet desperation here too, and for many people a calm exterior belies furious fast paddling below the surface.
Diana Studer says
rather pretty tiles at the grocer
Yes Diana, I am in love with those tiles too!
Bob Barfield says
So sad to see this decline, it has been some years since we traveled every year to the west coast for 2 weeks of slow life and Guinness with the magical colours as seen in your photos. Then your "boom" came along and it became so expensive, even that pint of the black stuff. We must come back with our caravan. Catherine lovely photo's as always
You must come back Bob, I think sense prevails and prices are a bit keener again. Funnily our tourism industry is on the rise again too and the Wild Atlantic Way in the west has been a huge success. Worth it for the lovely black stuff at least……
Gotham Girl says
Adore the wabi-sabi feel to them all! Beautiful captures…
Irish wabi-sabi Robin! But for me, quite sad too…..
Oh I am so smitten with these buildings waiting to be loved…and they are….such beauty.
I know! I want to move in to all of them!!
Pat Carroll says
Love it,as always stunning
Thanks Pat, finding beauty in the abandonment….
windrock studio says
So sad to see such lovely spaces with no smiles. I would give anything to have one of these, especially the grocers, and live upstairs. Would be nice if the sweet dog came with. But it's not hard to understand what goes on below the surface, hope folks keep trying.
They say things are on the way up again….sometimes it's hard to see that outside of the big cities….
Love these traditional shop fronts, just such a shame they are not open for business.
Aren't they wonderful? I hope that when they eventually come back to life, their past is preserved. They give such character to our village streets….
Kerry O'Gorman says
Sad and beautiful but ever hopeful someone will fill these doors and windows again. One of my favourite shops was in Dingle…'Foxy Johns Hardware' by day and 'Foxy Johns Pub' by night. It was the most beautiful shades of weathered greens and reds.
A great way to survive is to make your premises multi purpose. Love those hardware shops that are pubs as well! There's nothing nicer than having a pint in one of those…..
The photos are beautiful and colourful. And the story behind so poignant. It can be felt subtly in your amazing images, traces of carelessness and sadness. A stunning and moving post.
Ah yes Amelie….. I wish I could wave a magic wand…..
Catherine, I was moved by these images. You've brought the raw imagery of a town's life blood back to life. And then to show the little dog…as a touchstone of life left behind for a spell. Sad. I wanted to know more of these places. There is a story in each of them–a family behind each door; somebody's dreams. So, Ireland continues to paddle hard above the surface? I guess I knew that, but I forgot. It is true in so many places. Your colors in these photos are simply beautiful, cracked and worn. I want to go back and study them all again.
Hi Susie! Yes things are still hard for a lot of people although the narrative is that the worst is over……As you can see, in some places there isn't really any further to fall. Funny thing is that due to my ripe old age it reminds me of the ugly 1950's or the terrible 1980's…..we all survived and we will come through this one too…..at times the struggle makes it hard to remember that….