Writing me Down

Friday, July 21, 2006

Photograph (Activity 22.5)

It is the summer of 1986. The grass is studded with daisies, and the trees rustle overhead. We pass the gleaming windows of the tech college where I have just finished studying. I step quickly forward, and turn to take a photo of my two art-student friends, Karen and Justina. Karen shrieks and lets her long, red hair fall forward to screen her face. She puts out her left arm in a parody of an automaton-like walk. Justina, her dark hair secured back from her pale face with a black scarf and red rubber band leans forward, mouth open as if to bite Karen’s shoulder. Both girls are wearing long macs. Justina’s does not quite conceal the fact that she is heavily pregnant. Her dark eye makeup and large earrings are all that remains of her goth days. Just off the frame is the flat where we lived together for a year.
This is one of a series of photos that I took just before I left Lincoln to go to University to study Business Studies. Justina soon gave birth to Sam and moved to a house in North Lincoln with Sam’s father, Paul. I later received a photo of Paul and Sam. Karen moved back with her parents in a Lincolnshire village and started her own crafts business selling on stalls. A long time later, I received a phone call from her inviting me to a religious seminar. I declined, and never saw or heard from her again.