Lunch break

My body is full of squirrels trying to fuck each other. Today at least. I’ve been peachy peachy the last few days. Maybe because I’ve been writing ALL day like 8 hours like when I shouldn’t be because I might get in trouble. But I did it anyway. And now today, I actually have things to do busy things to do, but I’m anXious. Holy cow for no reason, really, except all the sudden the squirrels came. I’ve been trying to come down. Dammit, maybe I should have eaten that doughnut. A sugar shock. I’ve been listening to music and I stood outside for a long time waiting for a ride to lunch. But when I was outside I saw a mother grab hold of her daughter’s hair and pull. This little pink dot. In a pink shirt and pink shorts and black punctuation mark shoes. 9 years old? “Hurry the fuck up” because she was walking slow and I watched her face the whole way, the little girl, this hard face that won’t ever soften not ever. A fly crashed into a newstand, landed upside down. How does he know to right himself? Wings fluttering. It’s instinct. So much of what we do is learned. Humans have such shitty teachers sometimes.

A coworker brought his baby into work. And I don’t care. I have a hangnail.

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6 Responses to Lunch break

  1. That first line up there is a wonderful and I know that feeling well. The rest of this post is a suckerpunch. Bear witness, Rachel. Sometimes it’s all we can do. Hangnails hurt more than people give them credit for.


    • rachvb says:

      Thinking about that girl now makes me want to cry. I was hoping when she walked by she would look at me, but why would she? I think they both knew I was watching them. They were so close. Once they passed, the little girl ran ahead. And then fell behind again like she couldn’t stand next to her mom not for one second.
      Things happen so quickly in moments. We spend so much more time trying to understand it all and never do.

  2. ps. Your photo Amish Girls is gorgeous. I could look at it for hours.

    • rachvb says:

      ooh, thank you! I’m glad you like that photo. It’s one of my absolute favorites. I knew when I saw those girls on the beach I had to follow them, watch them. Sometimes you can just tell when people have a different light in them, a uniqueness, something that needs capturing. So I followed them, not close enough to be creepy, but to keep an eye on them and they climbed up to those pipes and looked out at the ocean like they wanted to dive in, but couldn’t, that deep sort of longing. They did all the work. I was just lucky to witness them.

  3. You are like my son that way. You are in the right place at the right time (this is no accident) and you have a quiet about you that doesn’t startle people. You can be there and they can still feel private. It’s a rare gift in photographers.

    • rachvb says:

      Sorry it’s taken me the weekend to get back to you!

      What a wonderful compliment. Thank you. I take pictures of my friend’s family every so often – just candid stuff, memories mostly – but she said once that sometimes she forgets I’m even there photographing. They are just so comfortable with me being there and shooting. It’s when people are most themselves, when they forget they’re being watched. It’s wonderful what it can produce. Images-wise. In writing and photography. I think that’s what I love about both of them, being a witness.

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