Verena Blok: I Smell Like Rain – Girlhood in the Polish Borderlands
“I Smell Like Rain takes place in Mazury, a rural area located in the northeast of Poland known for its many forests and lakes. As a child I spent all my summers there in a small village and became well acquainted with Natalia, a 12-year-old girl. Since her mother’s absence she has been living with her father and four older brothers at home, and remains the only female in the household.
I see Natalia as the little sister I never had. Together we go out on short trips in the area during which she shows me the Mazurian nature, but we mostly talk. I give her the attention she wants from her brothers, but does not receive. The brothers come and go and live lives distant and separate from hers. Natalia shares with me the idealized version of the life she would have wanted; a version that does not exist, but that she believes in.”
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