80-year-old Haji believes that “cleanliness brings him sickness.” That’s why he hasn’t bathed at all in the past 60 years. He lives in isolation in Dejgah village, in the Southern Iranian province of Fars.
Haji hates contact with water. Even the suggestion of a bath makes him very angry. And all these years of escaping bath time have taken their toll – Haji is almost the color of earth. He has managed to completely blend in with his surroundings. In fact, it’s easy to mistake him for a rock statue if he sits very still.
It’s not just bathing that Haji dislikes. His disgust for fresh food and clean drinking water is unmistakable. Instead, he prefers his favorite meal of rotten porcupine meat. He drinks 5 liters of water a day for health purposes, but only from a large rusty oil can. He likes to fill his smoking pipe with animal feces instead of tobacco. To trim his hair he doesn’t use clippers; he just burns it off over an open flame. An old war helmet keeps his head warm during the winter.