”On February 21, 2022, I went on a vacation to Dubai with a large group of doctors, my hospital colleagues. Back then I had been working a lot and didn’t really watch the news, so I was a stranger to all the commotion. And when we landed in Dubai, we have immersed ourselves into the vacation. We were walking around, taking pictures, having a good time, the things people do in vacations. The moment the war started I was completely shocked. It seemed unreal!
How can the Russians invade us? Many of us have family in Russia, we have friends there, how can a thing like that happen?! We spent the remaining days of our so-called “vacation” glued to our phone screens. Nobody was taking selfies anymore, we no longer had any interest in the things around us. That’s when I made the decision to go to Romania, that’s how it came to be. Especially since my two children were already out of the country when the war started. This is one of the last pictures I took back then before February 24. It’s so strange to see it again, it’s like it’s from a different life.”
Story collected by Ionuț Sociu for the Suitcases of Abandonment campaign. Project funded by CARE through SERA Romania, Care France and FONPC.
Last Day of Peace, First Night of War is an interactive digital installation, part of the Museum of Abandonment, a digital wall of images showing the last days of peace collected from mobile phones.