Saturday, April 17, 2010

Dreaming of Desolation Row . . .

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Continuing on with the scenes from la Réunion Island in the Indian Ocean, this shot is from one of the most remote areas on the Island, other than the Cirque de Mafate where there are no roads. We took a narrow, winding, cliff-edge road to get to this place, but only about 50 years ago, there was no road, and the only way to get here was to hike about four hours, and then climb up the cliffs on ropes. In French the word for "rope" is "corde", and this place was named "l'islet à Cordes".
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Now, given that there was a rather serious and totally justified complaint from Arnaud out in India about the sunset photo in the previous post, who pointed out that there was no wrecked car on the beach in the image, I thought I'd better placate his penchant for desolate automobiles, or voitures désolées. As you can see more clearly here in this second photo, there is an immobilized wreck of a car that has come to its final resting place in this field in the high mountain retreat of the Cirque de Cilaos (note how crops have been planted around it !). Not a bad retirement home if you ask me. . . just look at the scenery. And speaking of retirement homes, you may be able to make out, if you squint a bit, the shacks on the hillside behind the bedraggled looking car. Yep, this place was looking mighty fine to me, may just have to go see if one of those dream shacks is for sale . . .
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And as one wrecked car is never enough, I'd like to present another candidate for you careful consideration :
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And it does look like it was trying valiantly in its last throes to drive back up out of the ditch and onto the road, but just didn't quite make it, and gave up there. The little car that couldn't.
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And do pray let me know which you prefer, the sepia tones or natural rich green sugar cane colors ? I wonder how long this derailed creature will linger here, a monument to glorious plans gone wrong . . . had somewhere to go but didn't get there . . . got sideswiped instead and ended up somewhere else entirely . . .
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35 comments:

Eleonora said...

That first image is breathtaking! It looks like a giant child's hand carefully placed his little toy car in the middle of Paradise.

Steve said...

It does the human soul good to be confronted with land that is so big...

French Fancy said...

Yay, the wrecked cars are back!

ER said...

The first photo is breathtaking. The car really puts the hills into perspective. Abandoned cars and farms, iconic. In the Scottish Highlands and Islands rusting cars become everything from greenhouses to sheds to sanctuaries away from the wifeys.
I enjoy your blog very much. :) Lizzy

Susan said...

Great post - as ususal - do you think the volcano in the news made that first photo come to your mind?

Stickup Artist said...

Wow, that first shot is truly amazing. Really gives a visual to the reality that islands are mountains in the ocean. Looks like you could start a towing business and make a real go of it while buying that dream house on the mountaintop.

Tami said...

Sepia rear view shot....the sepia makes you focus on the car...and the curving lines! Great!

Catherine said...

wow what stunning scenery on the island - and that abandoned car in all the purple and green is my favourite - so incongrous!!

thomai said...

Would i go too far if i said that "i dream of sitting on the first car"? Just me...no one else. It reminded me of a great film...about a great man "Into the wild".

Thank you

BALLET NEWS said...

Wonderful photos !

jeff said...

Ciao Owen !
Sur ton post précédent, j'ai cru que c'était une photo de pub pour un site de rencontres ! ! !...:)
Bien vu !
Elle est vraiment superbe cette "image" ! Je m'y vois bien avec mon "harem" entrain de marcher sur les bords de cette plage ! ! !
Mais pour en revenir à ta voiture perdue dans ce magnifique paysage, tu n'aurais pas pu, pour une fois, la rectifier avec "photoshop" ?...:)
Je sais ! Ce que je te dis là est ignoble ! Mais que veux-tu ! Arriver là et apercevoir une carcasse de voiture... même là-bas, il y en a qui jettent leurs affaires où bon leur semble !
J'irais me plaindre au syndicat d'initiative de La Réunion !
Et l'autre qui a raté son virage, trop optimiste sur les suspensions de la fiesta ! ! ! Bon ! Ceci dit, il s'en ai remis depuis !
Mais putain, là où tu vas en voyage, tu fais toujours une "fixette" sur les bagnoles" ! ! ! Encore heureux qu'il n'y ait pas eu un cimetière pour chiens dans les alentours ! ! !...(8[
Mais je crois que t'as déjà proposé des croix ou un truc dans ce genre ! Owen ! Cool ! Prends des vacances ! Mais peut-être que tu vas en prendre pour de bon si ce nuage de cendre continue ! ! ...(8\
Non ! Là... C'est un bad joke ! ! !

Bon amigo, il ne me reste plus qu'à te souhaiter un excellent week-end !
Ne flingue pas trop la bouteille de pastis à midi pour l'apéro ! Et profite du soleil ! Mais merde ! C'est vrai ! Tu m'as dit que tu bossais aujourd'hui ! Sorry friend ! Un autre dimanche alors ! Aussi, quelle idée ! Tu aurais pas pu tenir une petite station service !..(8[

A plus amigopixpot !
Bonne semaine et bon dimanche quand même... à toi et à ta famille !
Ciao brother !...:)

TechnoBabe said...

I like sepia. Are cars left abandoned on the roads and left there forever?

Amy said...

I am amazed at where the car ended up, what an odd place. It thankfully doesn't look like it flew off that narrow road you spoke of.

The first photo is positively gorgeous; I'm sure the drive was well worth it.

Owen said...

Hi Lola !
It really was a small corner of paradise. I'm guessing someone drove their car there, got out, went for a walk, and just decided right then and there to stay... plowed up a couple of small squares for vegetables... I think you would like this area, the fresh fruits are unbelievably good, everything is luxurious, flowers, fruits, vegetables, nature... they even make some local wind in the Cirque de Cilaos... I took a picture of the winery sign which I'll post one of these days. Maybe not quite as good as what you get in Italy, but respectable...

Owen said...

Hey Steve, does it ever ! Big land, big sky, big ocean. And big volcano too, but at least the one here was quiet while we were there, unlike that ash-hole up in Iceland...
:-)

Owen said...

Dear FF ! Hurray ! Hip hip hooray !

I know you've been waiting patiently for the next installment of wrecked cars... didn't want to keep you waiting too long !

Owen said...

Hi ER Lizzy, many thanks for dropping in here, and if you saw some things you liked, well, do come back soon... try to keep it lively here, and stay out of the ruts that some of my favorite cars get into, and then stay there for years !

Would love to see some of your scottish cars transformed into other functions... Was just looking around at "Basic Black", looks good, I'll have to get back over there... when I have a moment... though moments are in scarce supply these days, due to a certain volcano disrupting life considerably...

Owen said...

Hi Susan, well, Reunion Island is volcanic also, and have been thinking about it since we got back from the trip there... but yeah, possible that this awful and awe inspiring business in Iceland helped bring this one to the surface of the pile of photos all clamoring to get onto the blog page, to have their five minutes of fame...
:-)

Owen said...

Hey Dear StickUp... what a great idea ! Now why didn't I think of that ??? That would be the perfect job for me, and I could see there would be plenty of work for me there ! As future posts will illustrate... Will give it some thought once this volcano business blows over and leaves us be... for the time being that big ash-hole is really making a mess here in Europe...

Owen said...

Hi Tami, many thanks...

Owen said...

Hey Catherine, glad you liked that one, me too... I would have liked to see the video of when someone drove it there, and then what ? Did they get stuck in the mud of the field maybe, and just give up ? I wonder...

Owen said...

Hi Thomai, no, I don't think that is going too far, you are welcome to pull up a seat there, all by yourself if you like, as often as you like, whenever you choose... I can give you more specific instructions as to where it is, exactly, if you like...

Owen said...

Ballet News... Thanks ! ! !

Owen said...

Ah Jeff... tu es sans doute le maitre incontesté des commentaires... là ou certains se contentent de laisser de mots, tu laisses un roman, ou presque, regulièrement, et c'est toujours plein de surprises...

Oh retro vade, par contre, tu veux que je photoshoppe la voiture dans le champ pour le transformer dans un gros chou de bruxelles ??? dans un brocoli géant ?!? Oh blaspheme des blasphemes... la voiture est justement le point culminant de la photo, la point qui sert comme point de repère, de réference... sans le bagnole en ruine, ce serait juste une autre banale image de paysage, beau certes, mais pas plus... la voiture c'est la valeur rajoutée... si je me mets à Photoshop un jour, ce serait pour rajouter des voitures en ruine là où il n'y en avait pas, pour faire plaisir surtout à Arnaud, qui regrettait justement qu'il n'y en avait pas sur la plage ci-dessous...
:-)

Et je t'assure, j'ai cherché le cimetière pour chiens là bas, mais je ne l'ai pas trouvé. J'étais bien sur la piste par contre, quand un jour j'ai vu un panneau qui disait, "Déchetterie animale"... j'étais bien curieux de savoir ce que cela voulait dire, mais bien que j'ais suivi la route indiquée par l'enseigne, je n'ai pas pu trouver l'endroit. Il va falloir y retourner. Mais sur cette même route j'ai bien trouvé une église en ruine, que je ne tarderai pas à partager ici, bientôt, je suis sûr que tu attends déjà impatiemment... bon, faut pas noyer ton impatience en attendant, d'accord ?

Owen said...

Dear TechnoB, oh most faithful of readers, and I thank you. Ummm, indeed, I think on la Réunion Island they have a law against hauling off abandoned or wrecked cars, because I can assure you as a personal witness with photos to back up my words, there was an abundance of carcasses of cars in purgatory, waiting to arrive in the promised land of the junkyard, but long deprived of reaching their final resting place, they rust and decompose slowly by the roadsides of an otherwise beautiful island...

Actually, I did find one which had a notice taped to it which said it was identified by the waste commission, or some such, and was slated to be hauled off, but the notice was months old I think...

Owen said...

Hi Amy, it was one of the most beautiful drives I've ever had, the views around every curve were stunning... and you are right, one would not want to fly off that road, as it was an awfully long way down !

Deborah said...

Oh I loved that first photo, having two of my favourite elements in it. Mist and mountains.

Came across one of those wrecked car photo-ops myself yesterday in our little village. it's amazing what positions they end up in, and how LONG they stay there!! Nobody seems very bothered to tidy things up here in France, I've found.

I like the little car in green - but just because that green is so gorgeously tropical.

Roxana said...

ah, the cars, here they are again :-)

you should really come to Romania some time!

i think i like the colours better than sepia, sepia is too obvious here, the message is too clear. yet with colours it appears somehow enhanced, there is contrast and tension in the composition, we are instantly plunged into time and history.

oldwaterhead said...

I love those pictures. I once lived on an island that had narrow roads with no shoulders, just an immediate steep drop into open sewers.

I never saw a car in one, but I had a friend fall in one.

Nevine said...

I like the sepia. And I'm still having some trauma about that accident from a few days back... so I'm just looking at these photos and feeling "ooooh". You know what I mean? But those hills... now that's another story, Owen. A shack in the hill would be just lovely... to live constantly with one's heads in the clouds... I can't imagine a more serene or blissful existence!

Nevine

Owen said...

Hi Deborah... it is often quite surprising how old wrecks of things are left laying about... I won't complain though, as they make subject matter for strange people like me...
:-)

Owen said...

Dearest Roxana,
The cars that were, the cars that are, the cars that will be here... there are more to come ! I can sense your anticipation from afar... Have you ever tried clicking on the label "Dream Cars"... that will take you on a trip through all the previous car postings which go back nearly to the beginning of this crazy blog project...

So, you have a few in Romania ? I would love to come and see, I really would... and indeed hope to one of these days. So if you see someone with sort of red hair photographing old wrecks of cars in your neighborhood one day, it'll probably be me...

But maybe you could photograph one or two just to give me a little taste ? Enticement ?

Bisoux Roxana, oh floating one...

Owen said...

Hi oldwaterhead... many thanks for dropping by here. I know what you mean about narrow roads with deep, open storm drains running along them, la Reunion Island had many many roads like that, which are worrisome to drive along, as they are very narrow, winding, and go up hill and down dale...

Owen said...

Hi Nevine, I hope the palpitations and other stress from accident trauma will dissipate and disappear in short order, but I full well understand the dissonance that can last days after.

Interesting how some like the sepia tones and others the color...

I was inspired to try doing a sepia version after seeing a collection of simply beautiful photos, many in sepia, by a gentleman from la Reunion named Edgar Marsy, who has a website...

http://www.edgarphoto.fr/

As for living with one's head in the clouds, la Reunion is the perfect place for that, the clouds roll in in the high areas in the late morning, and sometimes remain all day. Best to get up early if one wants to see the mountains uncovered... And maybe a few such shacks could be aligned to make a four room shack palace ?
:-)

Ann said...

breathtaking !!! i look at these photos..and dreams begin to form....wishes that someday,maybe someday ..... I can only hope!