Writing by Maiden // photograph by Sandra Lazzarini
She sat in the back of the store and let the endless drone of the ice cream freezers drown out her thoughts. It was hot and she could feel her sweat creeping from every crevice of her body.
Perhaps, she thought, more customers will come once it’s dark. The sunlight will melt away and they will come out from hiding like insects, crawling inside and gazing at the colourful array of flavours with their bulging eyes. Their fingers will claw at the glass on the display cabinet. Saliva will drip from their mouths as they survey the flavours: turkish delight, blood orange, fig and ginger, caramel.
When she was a child, she used to come here with her dad on the way home from the park. He would always select chocolate and she would always choose strawberry. She only wanted the strawberry because it was an attractive shade of pink when in reality, she much preferred the rich flavour of the chocolate ice cream. As soon as the two left the store, she would ask to taste her father’s ice cream and swiftly gulp down the entire thing before he could wrestle it back from her grasp.
Looking back, she couldn’t remember the people who worked in the shop at all. Only the ice cream. Now, as she sat in the back room and looked out onto the dusty street, she wondered whether any of the children she served would even remember her beyond the last lick of their ice cream or the gentle crunch of the tip of a cone between their soft teeth.[share]