Wednesday, December 9, 2009

i wish i'd sketched

This was her favorite time of day. Late afternoon, when the sun was but a mellow glow above the college buildings. The air was beginning to get a little chilly and the people strolling around the campus were dressed warmly-- more in anticipation of the cold than required by the present climate. She regretted having brought her jacket because she knew it was never cold enough for her to need one, and her bag was already bulky with, among other things, a thick sketchbook, several pens and pencils, and a camera. She owned only two jackets. It took her a while to find one, neglected underneath a mountain of tank tops and sleeveless blouses.

There was a kiosk selling street food by the bus stop, bustling with activity. She had to squeeze between two college kids skewering fishballs from a cardboard tray to get close enough to the vendor. Fishballs, squidballs, hotdogs, burgers, kikiam, cheese sticks and kwek-kwek, all deep-fried and served with a variety of dips and sauces. She was feeling adventurous so she got kwek-kwek, which she had never tried before: quail eggs covered in batter that turned an inedible shade of orange when fried. She wanted to eat leisurely while sitting on the sidewalk but everyone else was on their feet, so she ate standing up. She was conspicuous enough as it is, sporting a camera around her neck.

She had planned to sketch that afternoon, or take pictures, but lacked the confidence to face questioning looks. Instead, she took mental photographs, wishing that the dynamic images she saw were committed successfully to memory.

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