Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Uzbek Version of Salem Lot

I enjoy our summer vacations in the small town high in the mountains: we rent a cottage there and it is very convenient for our big family. There is not much to do, and we spend days swimming, playing, reading... There are not many places for walking the dog, too, but some of the existing ones are quite unusual. For instance, these abandoned buildings that we found during one of our walks.

We came there at the sunset and I gasped when I saw these abandoned buildings. They looked more than strange... Most of the windows lacked glass and even frames - just dead black holes; but some still retain their skewed wooden frames with pieces of glass, like broken glasses on someone's face.
However at least two flats on the top floors were definitely inhabited. In one of the houses, there were many of flower pots on the window on the top floor; the plants looked green and well cared for. In another house, similarly, on the very top, there were colorful children's clothes drying outside the window, like festive flags. Goodness... who could live in such a place with a child?

I looked around - the landscape could be coming right from a Sephen King's novel. Waste land full of dry sage brush and strangleweed; wind playing with torn plastic bags; abandoned plant behind a concrete wall... one of the flats on the first floor was definitely on fire... no doors in the porches, too.

We went around this cluster of buildings and went down the street. When we were going home after a walk, we had to pass the building again; with the corner of my eye I saw a movement in the empty window to the right of me. It looked like a white spot - a pale face looking at us - and then it dissolved in the darkness. When I turned my head to see more clearly, it was just a hole in the wall, an empty flat, with debris and dust on the floor.

I thought of coming again to roam the dark staircases with the dog,  but then decided that it was too dangerous. Instead, I came with my brother for a fun photo shoot outside.

Stunning, is not he?

 And these two local boys waved us good bye when we finished taking photos.

I learned later that these houses were build to house people who worked on the construction of the huge hydro power plant at Charvak water reservoir nearby. Once the project was over, most people went home and left the empty houses behind. There might be another project and new life one day, who knows.


  1. I'm glad you went for the photos shoot instead of taking the tour inside. I think that would have been dangerous. I love the photos. The one of your brother in the doorway is museum worthy! Looks like a professional model at a professional photo shoot. Great job!!!

  2. The abandoned building looks so lonely.
    You took some wonderful photos! very fun!

  3. Cool shots! and your brother is stunning indeed :)


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