Construction Zone | Mark Lindsay

Wandering in San Rafael the other day I encountered a construction zone. Part of the sidewalk was closed. After a circuitous route across the street and back again I got back to the zone and came upon a temporary underpass of scaffolding and lights. If I were a young lad I'd construct a fantasy world in my mind of underworld grottos of magic and mirth. The good news is that, in my heart, the little lad still dwells and I found myself photographing the makeshift underpass with glee—hoping to catch a goblin or two, peaking through the fence.

There is something about artificial lighting in daylight that evokes a certain kind of warmth in my soul. Maybe it's a Pavlovian response to the Christmas holidays. Perhaps it reminds me of the glow of shop windows in Italy, inviting and seductive. In any case, the orange glow of incandescence against blue daylight is wondrous.

The old-fashioned, caged light bulbs are also evocative of something. I remember car mechanics peering around our old Chevys, looking for trouble and oil leaks. And, of course, who could forget the scene in Blue Velvet where that guy lip syncs into the caged light to Roy Orbison's In Dreams? Those lights always seemed creepy to me, rather gothic.

It's a wonder how quickly something can take us back to the wonders of childhood, when everything seemed new and big and miraculous. I think, deep down inside, we are still in awe of most everything in life. But, the insufferable seriousness of our egos won't let us just be the prancing, joyous children of Earth that we all are.