sketchbook: Saturday 9 July 2011


I’m on a taffy-colored bench of shade-cooled steel; a white-coated Save-On worker sits next to me on a smoke-break, combing her flyaway shoulder-length hair. We face the parking lot from between 2 massive square pillars clad in assorted flat bricks up to 1.2 meters, then stuccoed up to the projecting soffit. Now the Save-On worker has left, her cigarette trailing strong smoke in the gusts of breeze.

It’s a sunny day. A lone little puff of cumulus floats in the blue sky above, over a pair of pale-brushstroke contrails. There is the rattle & growl & sigh of motors passing by, lumbering over the yellow crosswalk that is also a shallow speed-bump. Young maple-trees stand at intervals over the parked cars: a mixture of hatchbacks & sedans in my field of view. A white Suzuki sits nearest me, then a black Kia (perhaps). A silver Mercedes prowls by, waiting for a woman pushing a green shopping-cart. Now a smoke-colored Corolla. Now a black Kia hatchback (or mini-stationwagon).

There’s the electronic cuckoo of the crossing-signal at Lynn Valley Road. People pass by, not too many: young good-looking Asian couple; heavy weary blonde girl in long sleeves & long pants; grandmother & little granddaughter; a stout woman with a puppy on a leash. An old guy leaning on a steel cane, wearing a midnight-blue vest over his plaid shirt.

The parked Suzuki backs out, its motor rattling tinnily. A refreshing breeze blows through, cleansing & cooling the air. A great baby-blue convertible, ca. 1965, rumbles by, with mom & dad in front, daughter in back.

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