I found this strip of photos left in the dispenser of the photobooth in Northland Village Mall in Calgary in the spring of 2009. This is what I see:
Kathy is a receptionist at a dental clinic, she excels at her profession with her exceptional organizational and small-chat skills. Drew’s mother is Dr. Marter, the newest dentist to join the team. About once every two weeks he would stop by the office on an errand for his mother. However, as time progressed, it seemed that the universe was finding reasons for him to visit the office more regularly. One Tuesday as Kathy was getting ready to leave for her lunch break Drew came by to see if his mother was free for lunch. Dr. Marter was with a patient but Kathy expressed that she would be delighted to have his company. As they sat in Swiss Chalet, discussing his future goals and her messy divorce they both felt tiny seeds inside them sprouting.
Kathy had promised her son, Oliver that they would pick out a new TV together before summer started and so she asked Drew, who was working full-time at Futureshop, if he could give her some advice. Drew replied that he would be happy to and that he could even get her a big discount. Pleased, they arranged at time to meet at the mall when they were both off work.
A week later, distracted, anxious & exhilarated, Kathy left work quickly to pick Oliver up from his after school club. They met Drew at the entrance of the mall and passed the photobooth on the way to Futureshop. An impulse overtook Kathy, she insisted they go in and after some hesitancy and negotiation Drew and Oliver complied. They planned the sequence of photos, reserving the last two for just Kathy and Drew so they could each have a copy. The blub flashed and for ten seconds everyone was happy, numb and tingly.
The moment was soon broken when Kathy’s cellphone rang. It was Oliver’s stepmother, she was supposed to pick him up that day and was hysterical over an important matter. Plucked from the ecstasy of the moment, Kathy, flustered and embarrassed realized she and Oliver must go at once. She apologized, offered an explanation, asked for a rain check and said goodbye in one long blurry sentence. Not waiting for Drew's response, she and Oliver walked briskly out of the mall. Drew digested what had just happened and in a trance left the photobooth as its insides were still rumbling.