We used to go to the mall often when I was young, me and my friends piled in the back of our big station wagon. My mom used to drive us there on school day afternoons. White kneesocks, plaid school uniforms, all talking simultaneously in our high voices. I never paid much attention to her; window down, her elbow resting on the door, cigaret dangling from the corner of her mouth. When I try to picture her now, I can’t help thinking she was sad. Sad and dead tired. She was a beautiful woman, always well dressed: stylish hairdo, pretty earrings, nice nails. I have no idea where she found the time, but it couldn’t mask that dull look in her eyes or the soft sighs she emitted every couple of minutes. I don’t think she was aware of this, she’d be horrified if she was. I’m pretty sure my dad was clueless. He was that distant provider that showed up in the evening, hid behind his newspaper or the remote, pretending to watch the game, but secretly fantasizing about being free. Maybe they both were dreaming about the same thing, only leaving their significant other out of the picture, replacing them with a newer and better model. They were lightyears removed from that smiling couple in those happy wedding photographs standing on the dresser in their darkened bedroom, their youthful optimism undeniable. Did they still look at those pictures, or were they ignored the same way the stains on the bathroom walls were?
What happens to people after they have been unhappy together for a long time? Do they become like those abandoned shopping malls, relics of better times, when optimism was still the driving force. Obsolete, unwelcome strangers in their own life. Where did all those dreams go?
↬ Photographs by sephlawless.com
Song for today: Kings of Leon – Wasted Time