Sunday, September 19, 2010

Other Brother

As children we had our brother utterly convinced that we had another brother before him. It wasn’t hard, really. We just said “we had another brother once” and he bought it.

Other brother always died horrible deaths and was buried in a variety of places around the country. If we were driving down a back road I would turn to my sister Vicki and say “does this look familiar to you?”. Without skipping a beat or changing the direction she was looking she’d reply “This is where we buried our other brother”. At this point our mother would step in and inadvertently help us out.

“You two stop telling him that! he already gets nightmares!”. We’d be quiet for a few minutes then whisper “See, she’s mad that we told you … because you’re next”

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Leaving San Diego 16

I was out doing some writing at one of my favorite, soon to be former haunts. When a couple I know came in and we started talking. I brought up that I would be moving to Atlanta in a couple of weeks. When I said this they both perked up. “Are you getting rid of anything?” They asked almost in unison. I recognized the request and remembered they had a truck. My turn to perk up.

I told them I was clearing out my storage unit and trucking it all over to Goodwill knowing they would offer to help to have first grab at my treasures. I wasn’t disappointed and three days later I was loading boxes in to a truck with one of them sifting through the boxes to decorate their apartment.

Two loads went to donation and a third went to their home. The third contained a brass teapot I bought in Turkey, a black and gold vase from Athens, a walnut bowl from South Carolina. Various cookware and glasses, a Play Station 2 with a few games, African masks, carved gourds from Peru and a DVD player. A set of three stone obelisk each from a a different country in South America. All of the things I had used to decorate my homes and offices over the years were going to decorate someone else’s home or to sit in someone else’s storage. I’m a little sad and I remind myself that they are just things and I don’t need things. But these were things were bought instead of the stupid travel t’shirts with logos of cruise ships and slogans like Viva Italia or Pura Vida for souvenirs. These items were more like trophies brought back from foreign lands and proof that I escaped Missouri and even the country more than once.

I took the lock off the storage unit door and handed it to the rather manic little man in charge of the rental company and went home with only three artifacts with me. A brand new journal that I don’t remember where it came from, a small cut glass bowl from Italy and a black wooden treasure chest about the size of a brick and filled with coins from all over the world. I didn’t feel like I could throw these things out or just donate them so instead I was going to find them another home.