Pedestrian

 

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Photo: Smadar Halperin-Epshtein

This photo makes me smile.

The vistas and the light and play of shade and stream and sun, yes … But more than anything, the path and the story it tells: the measured step of the dad with the baby on his back, keeping one eye on the older one; the exuberant skip of the boy; the plastic bag tied to the father’s carrier, containing who knows what but probably some leftover drink and snack; the other people in the background, strolling, skipping, taking in the fresh air and the sights.

A timeless story. Set in any place, in every language. Humans walking from one place to another, the oldest mode of transport since we’d swung down from the trees to become bipedal and free up our hands.

 

 

For The Photo Challenge

Writing in the Snow

Snow is blanketing the East Coast, burying the rulers of measuring reporters, blowing microphones and umbrellas out of people’s hands, stranding motorist on highways, passengers on buses, travelers en route.

And it is COLD.

Too many cars on streets made plows lag in coming. They are yet to transform some paths from the look of dusted by ruptured sacks of confectioners sugar … to gray mushy lines of hiding blacktop. There’s a hush outside. The world stunned by winter’s hold.

People walk gingerly–confectioners sugar it might look like, but up close underfoot this is mighty slippery stuff.

From my window, everyone is a walking story:
Here are the sturdy footers, placing one foot in front of the other in assured steps;
There come the triers, delicately placing one foot and then another, almost in a dance;
The best-spot-placers, scanning the sidewalk for less slippy spots before zigzagging their way along, concentration at the full;
The text-n-sliders, keeping half an eye on the sidewalk and the rest on the small screen;
The unprepared, stepping tentatively in not-quite-appropriate footwear and attempting to ignore physics–a body in flat shoes will sink in snow piles;
And the snow-welcomers, faces upturned to the wind against tugging-hands at their wrappings. Many grasshoppers-size with bookbags and lunch boxes, dismissed early from school, drunk on Snow-Day delight;
There are the careful-balancers, holding canes and walkers or clinging to shopping carts or someone else’s elbow, praying to not throw out backs or hips or knees or ankles, casting yearnful glances at the sure-steppers and grinners, nostalgic peeks at grasshopper magic, and a half-envious, half-knowing shake of head at the texting and unprepared, for their careless take-for-granted health.

From my window, everyone becomes walking story. Stories in the snow.

How do you write stories in the snow?