I got in the mood for cleaning on the one little rainy day in California last week. What did I find that needed to be given away, recycled or thrown to landfill?
Ah, many things. I found to my chagrin that I had a collection of shopping bags with the store logo on them.
Why should I do them a service and flaunt the advertising for free? Well, they were pretty, but plastic harbors germs all around inside and out, so gone they are.
The next to be examined was my little book case. Years ago, the Knightsen Garden Club had a lending library. The left over books all had been published in the 1960’s or earlier. While I read some that had to do with WWII, most authors were out of print, and forgotten. In a mood of trying to preserve history, I took them into my apartment and dragged them from pillar to post for years.
They went. Where, I decline to say.
The paperbacks that I had purchased new or at far flung library book sales were too numerous to hold on to, so they were donated to the little boxes along our streets called The Little Free Library Box. You take one and leave one, not necessarily at the same time, depending on what your mood is. Some boxes in this town hold donations of books still on the best seller lists, as they are in an upscale neighborhood.
Taking a look at my closets that never get opened, I find old flannel nightgowns, overly large suitcases, purses, hats, and the topper of useless items, a full length fake fur coat. I needed that coat when I lived in Western New York state, or when I was waiting for a bus on a snowy cold night in Queens, but now with climate change, drought, and warmth ten months out of twelve, what am I going to use this for? It is too expensive to give to a thrift shop, and nobody this side of the Rocky Mountains would wear it anyway.
I am afraid to wear it on Halloween too, as I may be mistaken for a bear.
The next useless depository is my boxed up papers and journals. From 1977, I read through a whole notebook of drivel.
When I was freshly out on my own after a divorce, I wrote down my thoughts, feelings and even dreams. Now I cannot bear to read it, so after tearing out Every Page, I went it to the recycle bin and the hard cover to landfill.
The memories that I shared with my child during that time are remembered differently anyway, so what is the truth of history?
Eventually, all my belongings will be scattered among my children and grandchildren, but at least they won’t need more than a van load.