Thursday, July 04, 2019

Balconies in the sky

I think people live here
Laval, QC
June 2019
This photo originally shared on Instagram
Almost from the moment I first learned to ride a bike, I pushed the boundaries. First to the end of my street, then over to the next neighborhood, then to parts of town I had never been, then to other towns entirely.

The area where my father-in-law most recently lived was one of my first destinations. Barely a mile from my house, it may as well have been on the other side of the planet the first time I rode here on my little green bike with the whitewall tires.

Over the next few years, I'd return, usually with friends, and we'd ride and play throughout these smallish islands that dotted the river. Back then, the only civilization down here was three drab concrete rental apartment blocks. Now, of course, it's been overrun with (much nicer) buildings and traffic, but I could still happily wander the riverside path network all day.

Adult-me didn't have all day, of course. Stuff needed to get done back in the apartment. And no amount of photo-therapy could dispel the sadness that surrounded us. But, still, I carved out a bit of time for a quick early-morning walk with my camera. Because it felt like the right thing to do.

The old building you see here has been prettied up, but it still feels like it did back then. I remember staring at the stark lines as a kid, and the only memory I could take back with me was inside my head. It was a lot more fun this time out, with a camera in my hand and an adult's ability to do something about it.

Before long the real world called me back. And thankfully I now have some photographic keepsakes of a place that's been intertwined with my story for most of my life. Of a place that doesn't look like much to an outsider, but seems to still have an inexplicable hold on me after all these years. Now, as then, well worth the trip from far away.

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