Wednesday, April 6, 2016

...Wife and Kids

I was looking at it when the guy walked up and stood beside me. 
"Tell me this isn't your car, man," I said. 
He nodded, a gentle, yet almost undetectable, twist to his mouth. 
   "Yeah, sort of. My friend sold it to me and I was driving it home from his place with my wife and kids when it started smoking. This was the only place to pull into. It just didn't stop..."
   He was quiet for a few moments. My stomach turned, thinking of my wife and the two-and-half-year-old who has completely changed my - our - lives. 

"Everybody....?" I couldn't form the next words. 

"Oh, my wife had the kids out before I got it stopped. I'm here looking to see if her new shoes survived."

Just then his mobile chirped. I started breathing again. He wandered off a few feet and I heard him say "Nah, babe.  They're all melted in the footwell. Yeah. Love you too, honey." He turned and took the few steps back to where I was standing. 

  "So, are you a reporter?"
  "No, just fascinated I guess. Hey look, I gotta run. Good luck with the next set of wheels, brother."

He stuck out his hand and we shook. His grip was solid and calloused and I noticed the solid thickness of his arms and shoulders. 

  "Thanks for that. My friend, he already gave me the money back so I'm good, you know?"

He turned back to the car and took a step away. That was my cue. I thought briefly of taking his picture with the car but somehow the moment had passed. 

The next day and the day after that I came back and photographed the diminution of the evidence. 

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