Sunday, November 03, 2013

The things we learn in a parking garage

Boca Raton, FL
December 2009
Thematic. Golden glow. Here.
The Scene: We're on vacation in a faraway place. We've been out running errands in a rather large and entirely chaotic outdoor shopping mall. And as the late afternoon sun starts its inevitable dip toward the horizon, I head back to the car because I suddenly forget whether or not I locked it when we left, and I don't want to have to explain myself to the car rental folks.

Yes, I'm odd like that.

As I wander around the multi-level parking deck trying to find one forgettable vehicle in a sea of forgettable vehicles, I notice the shafts of low-angled light dancing on the stamped concrete deck. It's about as vanilla a spot as you can imagine, a piece of urban architecture that no one bothers to appreciate because its designers never appreciated its potential. No one ever comes into this built-to-a-purpose structure to take in its beauty. Rather, their goal is to get in and out as quickly as possible. The less seen the better.

Yet here I am, stopped in my tracks by the sun-painted concrete surface. I look both ways to ensure I don't get creamed by a pink Cadillac-driving grandma - this is Boca, after all - then compose and shoot.

Life's filled with tiny little scenes and moments that present themselves when we least expect them. Never again will I dismiss the unassuming parking garage. Or, come to think of it, regular folks who may initially seem unassuming and forgettable, but whose stories are worth hearing if only I have the patience and foresight to stick around and give them a chance to share them.

Your turn: Ever have an epiphany in a surprising place?

1 comment:

smalltownme said...

I looked down at a sidewalk I'd used many times before, and saw an impression of a leaf in the cement.