Wednesday, August 26, 2009

In the summertime we went to minor league baseball games, all the cousins and friends that could be gathered and stuffed in cars to be chaperoned by my nan and her partner in crime, the unsinkable Mrs. Webster. My friend and I weren't interested in baseball and instead roamed the small stadium in our bruised shins and giant tshirts, picking at mosquito bites and eyeing the boys running the speed-throw booth until they noticed and we could run away shrieking, her blond and my brown hair trailing behind us like capes. Back up in the seats, the sun beat evenly, the railings too hot to touch and the seats searing the backs of our thighs.

In the evenings we would shut ourselves in my room and choreograph dances to the latest R&B hits, talk about those boys behind the booths and what we would have said to them if we had had the use of our wits.

In the usual way of things my nan has ended up trapped barely speaking under a mountain of Parkinson's Disease and Mrs. Webster is long dead, my friend and I on different coasts and my hair no longer brown. But we are still not interested in baseball, our shins are still bruised. I still run away from boys and only later have something to say. Everything is changed except for what is exactly the same, and walking through certain patches of sunlight on unthinking afternoons the pavement smells just like those baseball games. For a moment, then, fifteen years ago is the same time as right now.

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