So, with that being said, I am happy to report that this is not that blog post. That blog post was boring.
Instead of writing about the many different things that make me happy, I am going to write about one thing that makes me happy and that I find endlessly fascinating.
I follow a couple blogs on Tumblr that post some excellent photographs of old places - abandoned hospitals and subways, old houses, and dusty staircases. I think part of why I find these pictures so spellbinding is the idea of what happened there while these places were in their prime. Being able to imagine what the walls looked like with fresh paint and polished wood. Where people walked, what they wore, what stories they told. It's endless.
Many of these pictures are also taken by people who go urban exploring - something else I find interesting. Essentially, you secretly break into abandoned buildings, take pictures and leave. It's all very "be safe and leave no trace." Not because you don't want to get caught, but more out of respect for the abandoned space. So below are some cool pictures I've found through my Tumblr, Mental_Floss and BuzzFeed.
(All the pictures in this post are linked to where I found them, so you can continue the exploration for yourself.)
Anyway, the author also likes abandoned buildings and traveled to Belgium to explore some empty houses there. Mainly to take some pictures to help promo his book, but that doesn't make them any less fascinating.
Most of the windows and doors were boarded, but there were a few entry points. Back home I had stared at photos of the house, wondering what was inside, imagining a kind of dark museum of deep-piled carpets and rotting furniture. But no -- the place was an absolute ruin. Staircases had collapsed. Furniture gone. The only light shone through holes in the roof. The floor felt soft underfoot, as if it might give way and send me tumbling into the basement.
Read the full text here: http://mentalfloss.com/article/27543/strange-geographies-abandoned-belgium-part-i#ixzz2HjcivCpX
--brought to you by mental_floss!
Here you have an open coffin, amid other bits of wood, slowly rotting away. Was it in storage when the psych hospital closed? Did they make their coffins on site or did the hospital order them from somewhere else? Where they preparing the coffin for a corpse when the hospital closed? If so, what happened to the body?
In the back of the picture you can see part of the broken balcony. According to the Flickr stream they were filming a movie there, so most of the balcony was blocked off. Like the rest of this post, you can click the picture to see more.
All of these pictures are full of unanswered questions... You just have to fill in the gaps with your imagination. I think that's also why I like them so much. They hold a silent reverence to the past - with the dust and decay as a badge of honor.
One of my favorite words is zeitgeist. It's a German word that literally translates to "time ghost." What it means is even more interesting... Zeitgeist: the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time.
All these pictures are part of the zeitgeist of their era. Providing the viewer with a glimpse of times-gone-by. I enjoy being able to vicariously explore through these pictures. To time-travel for a brief moment. To make them a part of my own zeitgeist.