I always walk by this laundromat on my way home from work on Sunday nights. It’s usually always empty and I always walk slowly looking at the bubbles on the windows and the yellow machines in a row in the background. A distinct memory of my mother always appears in my mind. It’s a memory of my mother and I in the laundromat in centre ville in Besançon, France. I was a working as a teacher and my parents had come to visit me for two weeks. We headed to the laundromat to do some washing. I was busy putting clothes in the washer while a French woman was muttering to herself in French and literally scratching her head because she didn’t know how to work the machine. My mother observed her for a few minutes. Then she got up, walked across the room to the woman and stood next to her. They did not speak but the woman made a gesture towards the machine like, “how do you make it work?”. My mother reached out and pushed the button to make the machine go. The button was marked “ON”. The French woman smiled and thanked her in French. My mother smiled and came back to sit next to me. She looked at me and smiled and said, “The machine is in English”. I looked at all the machines and they were ALL marked in English. It hadn’t occurred to me that they were not in French. I smiled at my mother as I could see she was so pleased she could help someone even doing something as simple as pushing the “on” button on the washing machine. This was the way she was. Always helping people out whenever and wherever she’d go.
I feel like sometimes I am forgetting her. It’s sometimes that feeling you have when you try to remember a dream you just had. Fleeting moments that come to me when I’m sleeping when I wake up I am so desperate to keep them close all the while my mind is pushing them away. I don’t know why this happens to me.
I am realizing that it is the little memories that tend to be the most precious to me. Sure there are the milestones and birthdays and firsts to remember. There will probably be photos of those moments for sure. I want to remember the moments in between hence my reason for doing a 365 photo project this year. And who knows… maybe I’ll just do it every year from now on…