I take every day as it comes. If it’s a bad day and I don’t want to go out, I don’t need to go out. I’ve got enough food in the house, I’ve got the warmth, I’ve got a car, I still drive and you know I feel, I don’t need anything else, I’ve enough to do me.
I never got her name but stood talking to her for twenty minutes on George Street. At one point she put her hand on my arm and I thought about the people you meet once and then never again. What sort of place should you reserve for them? How much importance? How much afterthought? How much time?
She turned 80 in March; she’ll turn 81 in a few months. She has three grandchildren. She considers the son of a friend of hers—a boy named Patrick—to be an honorary fourth. She has a cleft palate scar, a faded blue parka, and the smallest pair of lace-up brown shoes. She lives in a flat with a panoramic wall of windows overlooking Arthur’s Seat. The first time Patrick’s mother saw these windows she said—Oh my god, these windows, these windows. If I lived here, I would want to be sick all the time. I would want to be sick so I could lay on the couch and just look out these windows all day long.
What a strange thing to say, she said, touching my arm again. You don’t have to be sick to look out a window.
photographs taken with a Minolta X-700.