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The Herbalist

Herbs in the window of abandoned Herbalist Shop, Rethymno, Crete
Herbs in the window of abandoned Herbalist Shop

An abandoned herbalist’s shop in Rethymno, Crete. It was owned, apparently, by Panajiotis and or Dimitrios Kontogianis – at least that’s what it says on the packets of dried herbs in the window. Other fragments of clues – a faded, stained photograph of the proprieter, leftover belongings. What happened here? Where did they go?

I found The Herbalist’s shop in a very touristy part of Rethymno. After days of isolation in the hills, we found ourselves trying to escape the endless ratruns of tourist shops in Rethymno’s old town. Our attempted escape down graffiti-filled back alleys had thrown us onto yet another claustrophobic highway of reasonably-high-quality products. But amongst the olive oil soap and African wood carvings stood one derelict corner shop. I spent just a few minutes outside, peering in the windows, my camera lens finally coming to rest on an image of the aproned Herbalist. Where is he gone?

The Herbalist – Images by Dave Walsh

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