The Secret Lifes of Tourists | La Vida Secreta de los Turistas, ( started in 2016 and ongoing )
Ayasofya - Istanbul.
Chieko Ito, Japan
For a long time departures fascinated Chieko. To leave was the ultimate gesture of freedom, but now what interests her is the idea of arriving . A few years ago if you were to ask her about the kind of arrivals she was interested in, she would have said without a doubt that it was more fulfilling to arrive somewhere you had always wanted to go. However at this very moment, she is starting to think that to land somewhere you never imagined going to could give you the chance to experience the genuine surprise of life surpassing your imagination...
Anyway, everywhere you go you find spiders’ webs in the forgotten corners...
"Sens of wonder"
Pamukkale - Turkey
Saleh has had a hard time finding rest in this hustled week between the tours, the buses, the crowds and the schedules. He yearns with nostalgia for the tranquility of his daily routine back home…Saleh emigrated to Scotland almost 20 years ago and has not taken vacations in years. He is always working in his corner shop in Edinburgh. With the recent arrival of his brother, and his offer to replace him at the store, those dreamed-of vacations that Saleh’s wife has wanted so badly were impossible to postpone. She has always wanted to return to Palestine, visit the loved ones, see the place again! But Saleh refused; the impotence due to the actual circumstances would make him feel so angry and sad.
Now that he has unexpectedly found a moment of solitude in Pumakkale the "cotton castle", for the first time he contemplates. He is astonished; the truth is he has never seen anything like it. Many contradictory emotions arise.
He can’t remember the last time he felt like that.
Vladlena, wearing a blue and white-striped jumpsuit defining her slender figure, matching perfectly her caramel skin and reddish hair, stands among the crowd in charge of taking a historic photograph of Dmitry her fiancé. He is wearing a blue polo shirt that combines exquisitely with his beautiful blue eyes, and stands with his back to Botticelli's La Primavera, posing for a picture in front of this masterpiece.
People make it difficult; every time she is ready to click, a head pops into the frame. She gives up a couple of times, it seems impossible to take the perfect picture! Dmitry loses his patience; the smile cannot be sustained any longer. She is giving it so much importance and has let pass so many opportunities! Finally, he gets tired and steps away.
There she is now. Completely devastated, her fiancé has just left her standing up, wearing a blue and white-striped jumpsuit defining her slender figure, matching perfectly her caramel skin and reddish hair, standing among the crowd facing Botticelli's La Primavera.
She will continue walking through the corridors of the Uffizi Gallery, letting herself be carried along by the crowd. Works of art unfold in front of her and her eyes overflow with sudden tears. She no longer sees. She only feels and to hide it she takes pictures.
A Greek Island
Mr. and Mme. Bourgault, Quebec
They were never big adventurers; raising six was more than enough. They never had free time. When "free time" appeared their bodies were old and tired, so they had to invent what to do with it. Today on this beach, Mr. Bourgault is enjoying more than ever before the tender caress of his wife. He is at peace with the idea of no longer being self-sufficient.
Later, during the evening walk to the village, he will take his wife’s hand. This will surprise her but she won’t say anything. They will continue walking with a stuttering and slow rhythm.
Text: Adelaida Pardo
Photos: Adelaida Pardo