A Day In The Life Of A Traveler

When the photographer Georgi Georgiev expressed interests in the daily life of the Travellers’ settlement in East London, he was offered a unique insight into a devout, vibrant community.

“I had … just a few words to appeal and demonstrate an innocent interest in the way they live.”

Centred around a regular Sunday – an important day for several of the families – the series, entitled ‘The Way We Live Now’ focuses on the moments in-between ceremonies and rituals: Waiting, primping and getting dressed, for example. In these moments, both the highly specific and the ultimately universal are revealed. In the following captions below, Georgiev shares his perspective on the intricacies of this community’s everyday realities. 

“I was told that there are a few Travellers’ settlements in East London. Later on I found out that one of them is just down the road from the place where I had moved in recently. The first time I went to visit I had nothing on me, just a few words to appeal and demonstrate an innocent interest in the way they live. The second time I went it was on a warm and fresh weekend in May. This time I had approached them as models.

georgiev_24hours_001

Tony is hanging out on that Saturday, his box training has gone quite well the day before and community duties are sorted. He will take me around.

georgiev_24hours_003
georgiev_24hours_004
georgiev_24hours_005
georgiev_24hours_006
georgiev_24hours_007

It is already hitting lunchtime and right in the middle of the site there is the Hackney Playbus, spilled its entourage like a market stall with many toys and props for the kids to exercise their adventurous imagination.

georgiev_24hours_002
georgiev_24hours_008

I take a few steps in the homes of the residents who while busy with their little things, keep the doors of their homes wide for me to pop in.

georgiev_24hours_010
georgiev_24hours_009
georgiev_24hours_09
georgiev_24hours_011
georgiev_24hours_013
georgiev_24hours_012
georgiev_24hours_014

The day approaches late afternoon. On Sunday it is a big day for a few families. A few kids from the site are having their Communions and Confirmations.

georgiev_24hours_015
georgiev_24hours_018
georgiev_24hours_016

At early afternoon the next day, I receive a call from Marian Mahoney and she insists that I go down to the site and follow them around the day of the Holly Communion of her second eldest granddaughter Ellie.

georgiev_24hours_029
georgiev_24hours_017
georgiev_24hours_030
georgiev_24hours_023
georgiev_24hours_031

Everyone is feeling festive and although not everyone has their outfit sorted, Marian would do it for them. The family starts to gather, striking poses.

georgiev_24hours_032
georgiev_24hours_033
georgiev_24hours_034

We all go together at the Saint Catherine of Siena Catholic Church where many other families are here to spend the day with the kids that receive their Communions today .

georgiev_24hours_036
georgiev_24hours_037
georgiev_24hours_035
georgiev_24hours_038
georgiev_24hours_039
georgiev_24hours_040

The white Bentley that also awaits in front of the church is attracting attention with its lushness. Snap! We are ready to go!”

All images © Georgi Georgiev

x