[dropcap]V[/dropcap]ALENCIA – At the time of the Spanish civil war in 1936, thousands of residents had fled the rural lands and moved to urban areas in search of work. But, amidst these sad happenings, sprung the unusual love story of Juan Martin and Sinforosa Colomer, who resolved to stay in their own village. Now they have lived by themselves there for 45 years.
Now aged 79 and 82 respectively, the couple work the land and have as pets a few dozen cats and dogs, in a land where, once, about 200 residents lived.
The couple has, since 45 years, spent their days washing, cleaning and tending to their animals and crops.
They live in the abandoned town of La Estrella, located about 100 miles from Valencia. A short film by ‘Jungles In Paris’ has highlighted the simple yet hard life of this couple living in the isolated town.
Juan Martin told the filmmakers he would have left years ago, but his wife grew up in the city and it was there that they had a daughter, who tragically died at eight. ‘Had it been up to me, I would have left the town a long time ago. But I can’t leave her by herself.’
According to Angloinfo, due to a natural disaster that killed many residents, the town never regained its original hustle bustle. This loss of population was further aggravated, first by the movement of population from rural towns to cities amid the Civil War, and recently, by the modern demographics.
In one touching moment in the film, the two are shown eating lunch together when Sinforosa lovingly scolds her husband, “How much oil have you put on the food? Don’t you see the lettuce is plain?
Because he was familiar with her innocence, he chuckled without retorting back. He told the filmmakers that he had met her as she was bringing in the cattle from the field one day.
From there, the couple got to know each other at the two local taverns, where dancing used to be held at the weekends. And now, they live in solitary.