Seashells and Sequins
Two teenage girls in matching denim mini-skirts hurry along the dimly-lit seafront showing off their sun-kissed glow, silky hair and sequinned crop tops. A seashell choker lays around one girl’s neck whilst the other’s wrist is wrapped in a colourful array of handmade, threaded bracelets.
Their stride is confident, yet somewhat careless, as if they could misplace their feet without consequence or criticism. As they stumble past me giggling, I notice them smiling at a group of local boys only to then continue to walk past them. I wonder what it feels like to hold that much certainty in such basic movements; I wonder what it’s like to possess that much unabashed energy, fearlessly prancing towards a limitless future.
He hastily paces from one table to another, his hands carefully balancing innumerable small plates piled with cutlery. Despite clearly being encumbered by dishes filled with fish bones, falling spoons or complaining customers, he seems calm, docile. He’s obviously been doing this for a while; perhaps every summer or maybe just so he can save up enough to go travelling. He looks like he’s travelled. His toned arms seem tired and strained, he seldom smiles which means he’s either unhappy or focused. His unexpected grace and perceivable depth produce endless thoughts and questions in my mind. I wonder what it feels like to have all eyes on you. I wonder what it feels like to act so simply yet remain unattainable. I wonder what it feels like to be the woman he wants.
Rock, Paper, Scissors
In a local pizzeria, a small girl with curly blonde hair challenges her friends to rock, paper, scissors at the dinner table. The grown-ups are preoccupied with double-checking their order with the young waitress so no one tells them to lower their voices. Encapsulated in a game of instinct and luck, the three children sit there not worrying about whether they’ll suddenly choke on the mozzarella or whether they’ll get food poisoning from their dish. The children aren’t worrying about whether they’re sat near an exit or whether they’ll be able to fall asleep at a reasonable time. They’re not worrying about whether they’ll be able to pick up their glass of water without shaking or whether they have enough Propranolol to get them through the meal. No. All they’re worried about is whether a rock will destroy their scissors. Meanwhile, I’m having a panic attack.