Every week on our way to church we weave through the little town of Vilseck and pass by the beautiful, crumbling architecture that’s so characteristic of our little corner of Germany. And every week I tell myself that one day I’m going to stop and take some photos. Well, today was that day! I only made two stops, and they were quick ones. I could spend hours wondering through these little towns with my camera in hand. But between kids, schedules, and life in general, a few minutes here and there will have to do.
There’s always been something that’s fascinated me about old, dilapidated architecture. It’s probably the idea that what was once vibrant and new and teeming with life inevitably withers away into an unwitting monument to the past, along with the people who first inhabited it. The lines, cracks, and crooked, crumbling facades would have relegated many old European buildings to a status of archaic ghost-house if it weren’t for the fact that they are still inhabited. As I stood here photographing this window, a local German lady opened it up, gave me a big smile, and asked me something (in German) pertaining to my photography, haha! Luckily she seemed friendly and I smiled and told her how beautiful her window was. I’m not sure how much of my English she understood, but she seemed to understand my sentiment at least.
Anyway, this building is literally caving in on itself, or so it seems. But as the concrete exterior fades and chips away, this friendly elderly lady keeps fresh flowers in the windowsill and it’s this that I find so striking; the combination of old and new, dying and living, and how stunningly beautiful that contrast is! And these small, quiet Bavarian towns are full of this.