A Thousand Doors.

I am suffering from ADD when it comes to hobbies. In the attempt to rekindle my passion for photography, I am revisiting my work from years ago. Back at the time when chasing sunrise and sunsets goes without thinking.

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This particular photo trip brought us to Semarang, the largest, and capital city of Central Java, in Indonesia. I particularly miss the rush of such trips, which usually begins during equipment packing. Deciding which bag to use, filters to bring, lenses….exciting problems. Mono or tripod???

The main agenda for the Semarang trip was an old colonial building called ‘Lawang Sewu’. Built by the Dutch, and used as a wartime headquarter/prison during the Japanese invasion in WWII. You can read more about it’s history on here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawang_Sewu. ‘Lawang Sewu’ translates to ‘A Thousand Doors’. Needless to say, famously haunted.

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I did the least research of this place, before the trip. So I stupidly agreed to a 6.30am visit to the place. Knowing it was haunted, would not necessarily deter me from visiting, but it would’ve at least prepared me mentally. What happened instead was trying to shoot pictures whilst having goosebumps, and my heart beating like a pinball machine on steroids. I felt rushed because of it, and didn’t spend as much time with my composition as I would’ve liked. Regardless, I enjoyed the chilling experience.

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Naming this site didn’t require much imagination. There were really a whole lot of doors.

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Ever heard the superstition that aligned door ways is a bad omen? I don’t think the architect of this building did. Or worst, the superstition might even have been born out of this place.

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This was probably the freakiest image I captured, as I am adamant that the shadowy figure at the end of the hall wasn’t there when I snapped the picture. This being before 7am, we were the only ones in the building, accompanied by the local guide. We decided to leave shortly after this picture was taken. Not cos I realise I captured something that I shouldn’t/couldn’t have, but because the guide advised me personally to let him know if I feel any sort of heaviness on my shoulder. It was extremely important that I not leave the compound with it. At that moment, all I could think of was the movie ‘Shutter’.

Are Asian ghosts scarier than others? We all felt so, as we hurried towards the exit gate.

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