© 2017 by HEATHER FRACCALVIERI.

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hfraccalvieri@gmail.com  |  @hfraccalvieri

Graphite and watercolor, 12" x 18"

A Hard Day's Night

I love old family photos. Especially the black and whites. They just seem so much better to me. And there's something kinda magical about seeing someone I know much younger than I've ever known them to be, surrounded by all these things I've never seen in a room I don't quite recognize. It's like seeing them on set in a movie. I can almost imagine Jimmy Stewart walking through the room and sitting in the other chair next to my grandmother here. And as much as I know she would have loved that, life was never that glamorous. Grandma Trudy raised six kids and worked full time at a life insurance company. 

But after all that, long after this photo was taken, we were driving back to Columbia from Charleston in my mom's 1981 Volvo 240. The weather had held out until it was time to head back home, and it began to pour during the drive. So, the thing about Grandma was she got her hair done once a week. Always. She was that lady you saw 20 years ago running through the parking lot on a rainy day with an umbrella AND a rain bonnet. She always had her shower cap hanging up in the bathroom at home, drying. And if someone from outside of the family came around swinging a water gun or tagging along to a trip to the pool, they got that warning that for the rest of us was common knowledge, was law; that we recited like it was a creed: "do not get Grandma's hair wet."

 

 So when the Volvo's sunroof started to leak and the torrential rain started dripping right on top of Grandma's head, well...the horror, right? And my eight-year-old self sat in the back not quite knowing what to expect: you DID NOT get Grandma's hair wet. But she did the last thing I expected. She laughed.