Quirino, 76, has lived all his life in the Cape Verdean ghost village of Ribeira Funda, which was deserted 40 years ago. In 1983, a man was killed by a rock that broke loose following heavy rainfall. As a result, all the villagers moved to nearby Estância de Brás—all except Quirino, that is.
Here in this deep and spectacular valley between the sea and the mighty mountains, Quirino spends his days alone but for the company of a chicken and the radio that is his lifeline to the rest of the world. It is on this majestically shot rocky coastline that he reflects on his own life and on life in general—on how brief our time is here, never knowing our destination.
“Life in Cabo Verde is really hard. It doesn’t give any stability. It’s like a boat without a keel,” he says in this thoughtful and melancholy portrait. Quirino notices that he is becoming increasingly stiff and forgetful. He faces a dilemma: should he stay or should he leave the only place he has ever known, to live out his last days elsewhere?