I noticed him because he sat with the sort of posture that eluded most of the adult passengers in the car, and a stillness impossible for others of his age. He was a small Portuguese boy; his hair was the colour of coffee with milk, cut short and neat, shiny and fine. His mouth was serious but soft and elegant. It was a mouth that would break young girls' hearts one day. Today, it only looked mildly petulant.
He wore a faded yellow long-sleeved raglan shirt, and on his legs, old but clean jean shorts, cut in a rather outdated style. What I loved best were on his feet, where I might ordinarily see sneakers, kicked to battered rags, I found real black leather shoes, with a large flap on each that button-snapped, and white sport socks, perfectly pristine.
His father sat next to him like a great rock in the sea, a man of girth in a plum shirt. Narrow glasses perched delicately on the tip of his nose, he read the day's news with utter serenity.
As we pulled into the next stop, an older boy ran in and without hesitation, scrambled into the empty seat beside my boy. The older boy at once slumped sulkily against the glass partition, legs swinging, and ceaselessly squirming and wriggling.
This newcomer was given the darkest of looks, as though he might harbour a particularly virulent strain of a particularly nasty pox. My boy shifted closer to his father, who read on in obliviousness.
posted at 5:56:21 pm
2. As "Americana" defines itself as artefacts of American culture, "Gloriana" consists of the artefacts of my culture.
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