What is it about abandoned places that attracts us?
Years ago I had a recurring dream about walking with friends in the woods. Sometimes it's freezing cold with snow on the ground. Other times it's the height of summer, yet cool in the forest.
We come upon an old, falling down abandoned house. Approaching carefully, we walk up rotting steps on the wooden front porch and peer in the windows. The dream always ended before we could enter the mysterious old home.
Every time I had that dream I woke up thinking I've got to find that house. There's something in that house that I need to find or know about.
Last year my sister and I visited the farm where my grandmother grew up. We parked between two old barns. It was pouring rain but the cows in the barnyard didn't seem to mind. Cousins now owned the farm but no one was about.
I had the distinct feeling that I'd been there before. The setting reminded me of the dream, minus the woods surrounding the abandoned house. Not truly abandoned, the old farmhouse is being used to store lumber. Cornfields are planted within 10 feet of the front door. If there was a porch, it's long gone. A small dilapidated summer kitchen sits just feet from the main house. Cows watch us as we wander around in the rain. I take a few photographs, wondering, have I been here before?
©BARBARA BOWARD PHOTOGRAPHY