Free Write Friday – Riggers and brothers, returning home

Something I don’t mind doing from time to time, writing something based on a photo, and just see where the story goes. This one gave me a sense of two brothers returning home, and then it just grew from there. First time for Kellie’s blog though.

To follow my Friday prompt, check it out at:



Riggers and brothers, returning home

It came time to return home, to leave the world of sky construction far behind. Back to the forest of our ancestors, on the other side of that old bridge we helped construct as kids. Yes the days when safety was common sense thing. So, here we are little brother, parked at the gateway to our world as kids, for the first time in ten years, thankful to both our girlfriends, for believing in why we need to cross our old friend, her steel still straight and true. A single lane to freedom we thought so long ago, an escape from our ancestors’ forest, into a wide and open world, where we found chaos on the ground. But then brother, we remembered her, her fresh painted steel. The hundreds, or was it thousands of bolts and rivets, the way she stood high above the river of our people and connected families on each side, our communities. We did find freedom and peace in the steel of the sky for a while, but the years have passed, and the liberties of home that lay at her steel feet are a welcome site.

What do you think little brother, out of respect for what the old girl gave us, we owe her that at least? Yes. Here we go then pick a foot. Our girlfriends leaning against the front of our old truck, we’re standing at the foot of the old girl’s beams. Kate and Marla shout go! Off and running we have soon made it to the level of her cross-members, they seemed so high when sixteen was just the beginning. Sprinting along her warm steel beneath our boots, as we hurdle each of her short cross-members, faster and faster, on our toes we bolted till the end, stopping at the top. The days from our youth, we stood there, looking around, deep into the ancestors’ forest. This old bridge is our freedom, our freedom to choose how we live, but we’re home now, and she offers us that comfort.

As we duck our heads under the last cross-member of our old friend, with her true, fine, and structured steel, a little dusty, but she’s all good. Kate, Marla, what are you waiting for? Deep in conversation, they stop and to wave while laughing, Kate snapping a shot of us happy trio. Jumping in the truck, the girls find no key, and shout it out. We slid down the girl’s eastern feet for the final time that day, walking back across her to say goodbye, but we’ll be back. Kate, snapping more shots as we cross under her painted and slightly rusted steel, the bridge, our old friend. Till we close on the truck, to our girlfriends hugs and laughter.

11 responses to “Free Write Friday – Riggers and brothers, returning home

  1. I just adore the nostalgia in your story! The imagery, the narrative, the innocence! I am so pleased with your contribution and enjoyed the read so very much. Thank you for participating in FWF and I hope you will write with us again soon!

  2. After writing the above, and knowing what influences came into play during the short process, the ones external to the photo of the steel bridge. Prior influences of reading a few years back about the steel/ironworkers of New York, when the vintage photo of steelworkers on a break was in high circulation ( I revisited the research and found some more material.

    At the start of the short video below it notes a bridge that is built back in 1886 across the St. Lawrence River, the rest explains its self.

    I probably did see this video back then, and it has more than likely influenced parts of the story above. For the right people it would most certainly be an interesting story to get further into from a more factual perspective, and explore the different threads.

    My interest in steel/ironworkers, (over here we call them riggers) stems from in the past doing survey work (This is my day job, and it often gets physical and interesting once outside the office) on power stations, mine/ore processing plants, and overhead crane installations, where often we are working side by side with riggers at heights (don’t do this sort of work anymore).

    That’s the influences to the story above, hope that gives a little background to why the story developed the way it did.

    Happy reading.

    • Thank you! It developed from Kellie’s latest Free Write Friday theme, which I actually did before the sun came up on Saturday morning, from just a photo.

      The story came out so quickly, that I had to go back and see where it had been and came from in the recesses of my mind.

      You have beautiful writing too, that I need to check out more of soon!

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