The Photo Album
The Photo Album2 mins 645 2 mins 645
The wave of black coats and dresses slowly emptied the lobby. The last group of relatives gave me their condolences and left, after which I began cleaning the homage that had been setup near the coffin. The large picture of my aunt was the last thing I kept way. Right behind the frame was a large cardboard box titled: ‘For my favourite nephew”.
I opened up the box, and rummaged through my heirlooms. There were all kinds of strange belongings of my aunt: her rustic paper weights, her favourite coffee mug and various others. The most interesting thing I saw was a photo album titled ‘The life of Emilia Richards’.
It was a vintage photo album: the pages were all dusty, the writing faded and all the pictures were black and white. I suddenly remembered all the exciting stories my aunt used to tell me by the bed, and began to wonder if these were somehow in the pictures. I started flipping through the pages.
All my favourite moments were there: her at the Apollo 13 launch, standing by the cloud of smoke; a picture at the Sistine Chapel; another with the Tokyo Tower.
The picture that intrigued me the most was the one at any empty street in Rome, with no one for miles on end. Well, except for a guy in an overcoat, with a long beard and matte black glasses and wait a minute…
I flipped back a page, then one more and another. This man was on every page, on every photo and I had never met him before.