From “Blur: A Memoir,” an ongoing and random series of stories, dreams, and memories from my life as a photographer. This is #4 in a continuing series from “Tesão,” about my wife Tereza and our life together.

©2009 Doug Menuez, from "Tesåo"

©2009 Doug Menuez, from "Tesåo"

I should not have been surprised to see her husband rushing out the door of our house as we pulled up with the groceries.

He’d been calling us for months from New York at all hours, threatening and harassing Tereza until she refused to answer the phone. Six months back he’d convinced her to marry him, then kicked her out after a month to get back with his previous girlfriend. Tereza was devastated and not eating. She was down to 85 pounds when I asked her to move to San Francisco and start over with me.

Now he wanted her back and had secretly planned this trip for weeks. Before I could even park, he was pulling Tereza from our car and pushing her into his. He hauled ass down the hill, going the wrong way, toward the bottom of the hill and a dead end. I knew I had a few minutes before he would discover his mistake and come back past me. I called my friend M. who skidded into my driveway less than two minutes later in his new Porsche. I hopped in bringing M’s 38 caliber revolver which he had forgotten at our house weeks ago. Frankly, I was scared of Tereza’s husband and made a clear, conscious decision that whatever it took, she was going to be safe.

His car zoomed past us, up onto the narrow cliff road with a 1000-foot drop on the passing side. M. was a war photographer, loved the action and gunned it. We easily caught up, passed by and forced him off the road. He started insulting me as I jumped out of the Porsche and approached but his ranting was incoherent and his threats rang hollow. I realized I’d won without a fight. I put the gun away and stood back. He got out of the car and tearfully begged Tereza on his knees to come back with him, offering her half a million in cash. She stayed.

September 2009
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7 Responses to .38

  1. Hey Doug

    If that’s not thru love then what is? You introduced me to Tereza at Santa Fe so I know why.

    Great shot.

  2. Thank you for this Doug. In a web (photography) world filled up with “serious” reviews on somebody else work it is great you tell us stories, dreams and memories. I spent the last hour reading the rest of Blur and now I’m looking for the next.


    • admin says:

      Grazie and yes, stories, dreams, memories, somehow these fragments flow into and from our work and it’s useful to get them onto paper. Really appreciate the comment…d

  3. Pingback: A Porsche, a gun, and one very angry husband « Stockland Martel

  4. Tasra Dawson says:

    Wow, I got chills as I read your story. How terrifying for Tereza. How brave of you. What a horrible experience, but a glorious victory in seeing the two of you together now. Thank you for sharing this intimate piece of your world.

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