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28 June 2007

Mousetrap

We found this man in a little village; he was just walking around. We tried to talk to him and to find out where he lived. Apparently he was a little deaf because all he showed us were the nearby fields, not the house. After trying a few more times, he eventually brought us to a barn, opened the door and entered, gesturing us to follow.

We walked into the stable in which the cows roamed free. We thought he misunderstood us again, but then he opened another door behind the cows he pushed aside. We followed and finally entered the house. We later learned this is the normal way to enter a farmhouse. In the kitchen there was a youn(ger) woman trying to make a phone call. She appeared to be his daughter. And she looked quite surprised when we came in after the old man; she ended the conversation. When we explained what we came to do, she agreed to be photographed.

As I was putting on the black cloth over my head to make the photograph, I noticed that there was a dead mouse lying behind me on the mantelpiece. The old man saw that I had discovered the mouse and started laughing. He had caught it himself and he kept it here as a present for the cat. The woman sort of felt ashamed of the situation and covered her face with her hands while she laughed. After the shot, he had to show us his mousetraps. He had many of them and all were self made. The big one in the photo is a guillotine-like trap: the mouse (or rat) enters the trap, after which a very heavy piece of wood falls on its head.

4 comments:

Matt Niebuhr said...

I just came across this blog via "Conscientous" blog - and to see and learn more about your work - the back stories of your photographs - is terrific. Thank-you for sharing these. Already your photographs appear rich with story, but I appreciate the effort it takes to make these posts and to share your stories along the way of "discovery". I look forward to seeing more.

Ronald said...

Bert, I just found the corresponding photograph to this anekdote...
Sandrexo#1(Spain) I believe...
Love this combination of portraiture in word and image!

I will be monitoring this blog frequently, as I find it very inispiring!

Bert Teunissen said...

Thank you Matt; keep watching, there'll be a lot more...
Bert

Bert Teunissen said...

Thank you Ronald. Keep looking: there is much more to come.