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The Old Farm, Forgotten With Time

Located on a semi-rural property with no numbers visible on Google Maps, it is difficult to find any information or history for the Old Farm we recently visited.

A few pieces of art are dated as far back as 2013. In many cases, based on my own personal experiences, it’s some time, potentially years, before an abandoned location begins to receive visits, becomes trashed or graffitied.

A typical scenario for a site like this tends to fall into two categories:

1) It’s a deceased estate where no beneficiary or family member can be located. If they have been found, they may be planning to do something with it in the near future or quite simply, when they get around to finding the time. Sometimes it might be listed on the market for a long time.

2) Or the farm has already been sold under the terms of the compulsory land acquisition by the government or a number of other statutory authorities, as listed in Parts 9 and 10 of the Land Administration Act 1997 (WA).

Whilst it appears that a housing estate is in progress in the distance, its location doesn’t appear favourable. With the norm of fairly small parcels of land, the housing estate is set in the middle of bushy nowhere. A fair distance from the train station and presumably any form of public transport. Even shopping centres, food outlets and entertainment venues are yet to appear on the horizon.

Perhaps compulsory land acquisition has been made in order to widen the road. Despite an assumption a limited amount of property would be required to double the existing road.

Nethertheless, the house on the old farm, would surely not be worth restoring. Big cracks run down the walls. Many floorboards have been ripped out. Bricks and foundations have started to crumble, as well as unnaturally created skylights are visible in almost every room.

Some of the artwork is a pleasure to view, particularly with the variety of colours used. A few messages are also funny and interesting.

The usual scene of couches dumped on the verandah with bits of furniture and a hallowed out TV are present, albeit a minimal quantity. A few pieces remain inside, left lying around. Thick layers of dust piles up in areas protected from strong winds and heavy rains.

Fresh dung fertilises all the green I can see, presumably from neighbouring sheep and cows, which wander onto the property to munch on the pastures behind the house. Certainly a cost-effective alternative to mowing the lawn.

I walk around the area. Cautiously and quietly, as well as wanting to take it all in. Enjoying the peaceful moment, with the musical birds perched atop the trees. The usual wind sounds, tapping and flapping loose items in its path. A sound I’ve come to expect from almost every site I get to visit.

I love everything about these experiences:

  • feeling like I’m alone,

  • seeing things the world has forgotten about for long periods of time,

  • my existence limited to a place no one cares about or could potentially ever find me,

  • lost with my thoughts,

  • calm and quiet, instead of my usual highly-strung persona and stress,

  • free from the daily bullshit dramas, gossip, demands and troubles from muppets I have to tolerate

  • no technology other than my camera, as I feel myself slipping back in time.

Making it hard to leave, which always tends to be an issue if I go with someone else. If it wasn’t a matter of safety, I’d be free to lose myself here.

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