Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow Day!

The week may not have started off well (see here for details) but it's really coming through for me now.

it's a snow day.

That means eating frozen mangoes straight out of the bag, drinking homemade lattes, taking silly pictures and hot baths. 

All images courtesy of This is Glamorous
But it also means getting to all those niggly, little things on my To-Do List (that shit gets capitalized) that I haven't found the time* to do. 

Like unpacking the china that I inherited from my grandmother. And taking the time to carefully place each item and let the memories come. I worry sometimes that I place too much value and sentiment into belongings. They are so fleeting and unimportant in the long run, I know. But while there can be a lot of stress and heartache in going through a loved one's belongings, there can also be a lot of joy. 

For example: my family struggled after my grandparents' deaths. With them gone, there was no reason to keep their house. And those two and that house seemed, to me at least, to be the glue that held our family together. It was out of the way, hard to get to, impossible to maintain and yet still we gathered there holiday after holiday. It was the one place where we were always together and, suddenly, it was gone. 

All that was left was grief, and the burden of dealing with their belongings which fell mostly on one person's shoulders. Add that to the confusion of how we were to continue as a family and where all of us could get together under one roof and it felt as though we were floundering. 

But then, we found a place and a time to get together and go through the last of my grandmother's things. Enough time had passed that we could laugh, and it was still new enough that we leaned (just a little) on each other for support. Three boxes: Goodwill, trash, and keep. 

The china came home with me in my 'keep' pile, and as I unwrapped it today a lot came back. As I pulled sheets from the New Yorker off plates I thought of Sally, and the dozens and dozens of New Yorkers strewn the house. I found a few straw dog hairs in a teacup and I thought of her yappy little Jack Russells, one beloved to her, the other beloved to my grandfather. Neither of them was very beloved to anyone else. Several soup bowls were wrapped in gin ads and I thought of my grandfather's martinis. 

I don't need that china set to remember my grandparents. But I'm glad I have it, nonetheless.

*between getting engaged, battling an airline, and vomiting radioactive bile I have just been swamped.

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