In Transit Strand Hotel
In the Dutch seaside village of Noordwijk, Polish migrant workers arrive with their suitcases full of hope, to a waiting room of desires and displacement. Behind the promising sign of the former ‘Beach Hotel’, more than 150 migrant workers live in shabby hotel rooms. Young couples, single men and fathers who have left their families and home, looking to make a living doing part-time work.
The hotel is long past its glory days, but the deep-pile carpet, floral wallpaper and outdated gym in the basement, still vaguely show traces of the charm that the hotel must have once had.
The people that I met, all showed signs of extreme exhaustion. They told me that they earn four times as much in The Netherlands, than in their home country, and for this reason work as many hours as they can. The urge to return home as soon as possible is strong. In the meantime they wait out their time until they have enough savings to pick up their lives again in Poland.
In the bare and stuffy hotel rooms I saw the waiting, the resting, the desires, the resignation, the displacement, and sometimes, the love.
An intimate look into their lives wherein time passes by too slowly. And the painful waiting that seems to cause a feeling of emptiness. I saw despair, frustration and hope before me, all at the same time.