In a small blocked-off strip of parking spaces in North Domingo Baca Park, I saw a giant yellow sphere and walked closer to satisfy curiosity about what it was.
That’s where I briefly met a young couple working together inside a lemon; an unusually shaped a concession stand. No surprise, they were selling fresh lemonade. As I walked closer, the young woman saw my camera and called to me to take their picture. So I clicked, and then moved in to meet Georgette and Matthew, 49/100 of my strangers.
We didn’t have much time together. I was trying to shepherd my own flock out of the park. The couple was running a brisk business serving customers on a balmy evening. While taking down Matthew’s email addresses to send them their booth photo, he told me that he and Georgette are both 22 y/o and working full time vendors in concessions for his family’s business. He pulled out a smartphone and showed me a screen pic of a large food booth from the ABQ International Balloon Fiesta. He told me it’s not the one selling deep-fried chile cheeseburgers, though just once, he’d like to try one.
“That’s ours,” he said. “Well, my uncle’s actually. Georgette and I work for him. We get to tow this lemon to all sorts of events in Central New Mexico.”
“Do you like working in concessions?” I asked.
“Yes. We are both friendly, as you can tell. Right now, we are well suited to this and don’t mind the long hours. We get to see all sorts of people, and hear live music. I like that customers like our product and leave happy. It gives me a good feeling.” Said Matthew.
“What does your tattoo say?” I asked pointing to the calligraphy that ran from his elbow to wrist.
“Oh, that says ‘Isabella.’ She’s my little daughter,” he replied.
“She’s OUR daughter,” said Georgette, flashing him a feisty grin.
Then she walked up to Matthew and put her arm around him. It was that moment that I made my closeup of them under the lemon hood.
Two technical notes about the elements in the frame. First, the hazy clear banding at the bottom third is the top of the plexiglass sheild for their kiosk’s food counter. Secondly, even though her sweatshirt is printed with the word Chicago, in the portrait the letters “G” and “O” were cut off. It reads as CHICA; a casual Spanish term meaning Latina, or Latin-American girl. Though it was unintentional, I like the result.