It’s funny what you remember and what you don’t. Like, why did Angie and I decide to drive around and take photographs of fancy houses? I have no idea. But I remember sunlight streaming through the windshield, and the weight of the old Nikon around my neck, and Natalie Imbruglia’s voice lilting over the speakers.
That day, that day, what a mess, what a marvel…
We parked in front of a two-story behemoth, all white stucco and Spanish clay. The high-arching trees of Tanglewood threw dappled light onto the road and across our bare arms. Our shoes shuffled down the sidewalks, skipped over puddles of yesterday’s rain. We photographed ourselves in the water’s murky reflection.
Every secret shared… Why do I drink the feelings dry?
My broken heart was finally mended. I had time, distance, perspective — and now a handsome friend texting me flirty messages. Angie’s heart was more freshly torn, and I ached for her. But we were together, muddling through the humid day, talking and not talking about the things that had hurt us so.
Everything wrong gonna be all right, come September…
This neighborhood seemed like a good place to dream about the lives we would lead someday. Safe behind wrought iron gates, happy in high-ceilinged homes. It was the future, full of possibility, still tinged with the past. The first boy I had seriously crushed on lived down one of these streets. Flame-colored hair, sea-colored eyes.
Tie a silver ribbon around the pieces that remain…
When we finished our rolls of film, we got back into the car and drove away. With the windows down, I let my hand float outside, fingers buffeted by the air. We sang at the top of our lungs.
Later, most of the pictures would turn out to be crap. Some memories can’t be developed in a darkroom or preserved behind plastic.
We slid the 4×6 prints into photo albums anyway.