The Five Polaroids of Winter is a short story I wrote sometime in early-2022 after meeting real life twins of Moroccan descent at a covid testing site.
They were from Italy and worked as security at a site where I was doing a part-time shift at the time. We only spoke about the usual hows and whys, discussed the weather and what brought us to this cold country. But, unlike so many people I meet everyday, I was engrossed in them. Why? (I am still trying to understand) I observed the way they spoke of each other, of the weather, of their passions, of their temporary jobs, and of their family. I registered their reactions, made mental notes. Like a switch had gone off, I knew I had to document them somewhere, somehow.
I’m not even sure if they were all this or if it was something my inspiration-seeking brain just made up. My brief interaction with the twins, and noting all their similarities and differences was enough to bring me out of my writing dry-spell. I was also working a really dull shift on a beautiful autumn day so making up these characters to keep myself entertained was fodder, like everything is. I don’t really know why them, and why this story. But all I can say is it is an experience more than a story and it is best to dig in without knowing what to expect. Enjoy.
PS.: I was under a heavy spell of Mariana Enriquez’s work at this time. I had recently read The Intoxicated Years and the slang-y writing in Five Polaroids was inspired from this.