In Front of the Cinema

This is a particularly gritty spot in the gritty capital of a country composed mostly of pristine jungle, Guyana.  Attracted to the architecture of the perhaps once desirable residence in front of me, I stood in front of a threadbare movie theater, camera in hand, mentally composing an image.

Periodically, wretched-looking women, some with a baby in arms, would approach me and ask if I wanted to “see a movie”.  It didn’t take long to understand the meaning of the invitation on my own, but a well dressed matron heading for church stopped to warn me that films were not the primary attraction of the cinema and that malarial mosquitos were known to take advantage of the love fest within.

Focusing on the precarious dwelling shown here, I noticed an unusual amount of traffic, a slow but steady stream of derelicts entering and leaving.  Word soon reached me, via a garrulous man who had stopped to speak to me of Guyana’s various attributes, that the building’s occupants were wondering what I was doing.  He shouted, in a thick Guyanese accent, my response to a set of eyes half visible behind a curtain in one of the windows: “Admiring the architecture.”  Not wanting to push my luck, I departed some minutes later.