There’s this large buffet table in my dining room, pressed against the wall in between the doors that led to the hallway and my brother’s room. Nothing too special about the actual table, only that contains plates and mugs and bowls, but what sat idly on it mattered to me more. Tons and tons of pictures neatly arranged in tiny frames, sitting on the buffet table next to the bowls of fruits or hung up right above it.
Some pictures have been sitting here for years, before I was even born maybe, and others came along during the years, slowly piling up. I took most of these pictures, most with my phone or with my grandfather’s camera. My parents shuffled through the pictures and we picked a selected few to get printed out, buy some new frames, and added it to our little collection.
My fingers glide down the first frame. It’s silver with enameled leaves designs decorating the sides, delicately swirling around the corners. And inside the frame, was a picture of my brother and I in the white snow, sporting ski helmets and goggles, holding up our skies proudly.
It was when I was around nine or ten. I was in a neon pink ski jacket, peppered with flakes of snow. My brother had an arm slung round my thn shoulder, both grinning at the camera.
My finger trailed down the frame. I remember printing this one out. I had to do it multiple times, our little photo printer malfunctioned, but I was so determined to do so. We bought a new photo printer, shaped like a tiny red box. Using my phone, we connected it to the printer and there we went. Another picture on the buffet table. I was a baby, shy from turning one years old, with my chubby cheeks and dark eyes, sitting right next to my brother, both smiling.
Those were the times I didn’t remember, before I really had a consciousness, before I had thought. Those were the happy days too, with blissful ignorance, before I knew the ugly parts of the world.
I tapped on the top of another frame. This was a glued collage I had made in 4th grade of our family. I glued a bunch of pictures of all of us; Mom, Dad, my brother and I. It was always just the four of us, together.
Pictures always fascinated me. It permitted you to capture a moment in time; a frozen frame. Life was like a video, constantly playing as if you were stuck in a movie with the inability to stop. Pictures could stop that, could stop the mess and craziness in life and can keep a piece of the world in a frame.