Dieser Text wurde zwischenzeitlich ins Englische übersetzt:
[In deutscher Sprache ist der Text hier zu lesen.]
The Boots of her Father
Rahel hurried to hang out the laundry. It had to be dry by the midday sun. After that no one would take it down before it got damp again.
„Father is not going to let me leave in time again. Like always, he is going to use one of his delaying tactics, to keep me from leaving and I will have to take the last bus“, she thought. She picked up the empty basket and went back inside. As she walked through the hallway her glance fell on his boots. They were never going to get moved again, except by her, when she was cleaning the floor. She sat down on the stool next to the boots, took a rag out of the knee-high drawer of the cleaning cupboard and gently wiped over the coarse leather, as if rubbing his sore feet with ointment.
Her auditory memory retrieved the sound of his steps, as he came home. She watched the movie of her memories, edited it, put the rejected scenes in the box with the scrap parts and cut the remaining ones to almost create a funny film.
She saw the familiar boots coming towards her, how they came to a stop in a puddle of dirty water, how the smell of mud and leather mixed and two strong arms picked her up. Shortly after, she sat next to him on the porch, spit joyfully on the caps of his boots, wiped the dark paste off the surface with a rag and repeated that process until that dark paste was gone and there was only her foamy spit left. She tried hard to loosen the knot in his grey laces. Father showed her this trick with the outer prong of a fork. From that point on, she always carried a fork with her. There were always knots to loosen.
Towards the end of the film, she saw two men in police uniforms standing in front of the door, she heard them ask for her father, saw him in the hallway reaching for the boot jack with his left hand and wedging it between his heel and the bootleg. She heard the little „plop“ as his foot met the inner sole of the boot, saw him take his hat from the rack and felt his kiss on her cheek as he said: „I will be back soon. Tell your mom not to wait up with dinner.“ Jakob would also say that from time to time, when his friends picked him up to go play. And those two men were surely father’s new friends. They came up with police uniforms instead of Indian costumes or cowboy hats and boots, like Jakob and his friends would take turns wearing.
© Brigitte Seidel / Translation: Tim Seidel