The Pale Blue Door, Valparaiso, Chile 2011

"The whispers could be heard in the morning silence.

As the camp slept, the sounds of the nearby port rumbled from afar.

The whispers.

The travelers. The sons, the daughters.

The workers of a continent.

Speaking of the ghosts of trips gone by. Journeys taken, languages spoken.

For a time she lay rusting in a forgotten corner, her stories keeping her spirit.


Their arrival with a flurry, the usual splashes of life, of colour and laughter swept each carriage, awakening her senses.

The train, enjoying conversation once more, talking amongst her memories and teasing the dreams of her new occupants.

As they awoke, began another day amongst her shell, the dwellers busied themselves in the sunlight.

The whispers subsided, overtaken by chatter, of the day to come and the night before.

Memories and dreams intertwined with the ghosts of journeys past, interwoven into a new story. An evening ahead, a dinner, a cabaret. Another moment to be shared in a camp, in a world far away, beside a fire.

Happy to be amongst the chatter, the life breathing life to a long forgotten train.

Later that night Valparaiso gathered amongst her, a meal was shared, a story written.

A candle flickered in the evening breeze.

Two old friends held hands and laughed, a long forgotten moment suddenly sprung to mind. A whisper danced in the moonlight, its shadow caressing the crowd.

It's The Pale Blue Door, el restoran vagabundo. Valparaiso, Chile."

By the time the beginning of 2011 came around I felt exhausted and empty. 2010 had been insane, finally finishing off with a massive installation for The Royal Opera House. The project in Valparaiso was scheduled for the February that year. It was to be the last of our mad escapades around the world. I had to face up to the exhaustion and financial impacts of doing them. It just didn't pay off. The project went well but we lost a lot of money. Strains were showing in the team. The final nail in the restoran vagabundo was Glastonbury 2011. My heart wasn't in it anymore and it felt like we were repeating the same thing.

Wonderful memories though.

Pictures by Manuel Vazquez