Girlhood in the Polish Borderlands
I Smell Like Rain takes place in Mazury, a rural area in the northeast of Poland known for its many forests and lakes. My parents built a summer house there in 2001, and as a child I spent all my summers in a small village where I became well acquainted with Natalia, a then 12-year old girl. Since her mother’s attempted suicide she has been living with her father and four older brothers at home, as the only female in the household. Natalia’s family lives in an environment where people go unnoticed through life, without many prospects and few accomplishments. Situated in a place where masculinity is highly appreciated, her brothers came and went and lived their own lives separate from hers.