14 Nov Possessions Come and Go
After a few days without use, I take hold of the silver crown on the side of the watch and turn the knob. The bronze hand, the longest of the three, spins around the dark blue dial. When the hand passes 12, the watch provides a satisfying click.
The number changes where the 6 would be: 30. 31. 1.
Back to the first of the month.
The first of the month, one of twelve, each with somewhere between 29 and 31 days. Let’s call it thirty.
Twelve months. Thirty days. Twenty-four hours. Sixty minutes. Sixty seconds — a second — the briefest moment we can grasp. The seconds fall away when passed by the trio’s slimmest hand. Its red color is accentuated against the dark blue dial, juxtaposed with subtle harmony.
We can fathom minutes, for we often count them down until we’ll be free from obligations. We can work with hours, filling them, perhaps, with what we enjoy, or what our circumstances require; but we must fill the time with something.
Days turn into seasons, seasons into years, years into memories.
Memories flash through my mind of laughing till it hurt, of spending time with those I love, of dancing till the sun came up, of overcoming fear.
Time will take its natural course. Looking back we remember the good; each second on the clock is a memory to make, a chance to start again.
The watch sits on my bedside table, an essential part of who I am that stands for more than passing time. The case wears several silver nicks that add a time-worn look.
I strap the navy nylon strap around my wrist and go, maybe with a ring or another bracelet. I care about these details, for they make me feel like me.
These pieces accompany me as I go forth into the world. No matter where I am or how I feel, when I put them on, I’m ready. For what, I can’t be sure, but I know I have all that I need.
Maybe it’s not about the things, but what they represent — individuality, memories, a splash of color to my character.
For thirteen years I wore a gold Saint Christopher necklace around my neck. Saint Christopher is known as the patron saint of travelers; as the story goes, Saint Christopher was a man called Reprobus around the 3rd-century A.D. who carried a child across a river.
When Reprobus told the child he was heavier than the whole world (what a thing to say), the child revealed himself as Christ. I wonder what may have really happened to create this legend… Curious.
I was at a concert of one of my favorite artists a couple of weeks ago and the necklace broke without my knowing, lost amongst the crowd. I’m happy with the way our story ends — but dang, I loved that little golden coin.
The necklace served me well; it was given to me by my dad when I was thirteen, maybe to say go out into the world and find your way. I’ll protect you.
My watch was given to me by my mom, per recommendation of my uncle, a man whom I trust in the details. I like to think it’s understated, for only I know its quality, its travels, its past, and that means more to me than flash.
But if it was all taken from me, my possessions which entwine with the time and place in which I got them, would I be okay? I think so. At least, I’m getting better at adopting the mindset that our things will come and go.
Life does indeed become simpler with fewer things; those few things that remain become more meaningful, like a core, quality wardrobe that makes you feel confident and authentic. And then perhaps you have a couple BAM statement pieces to spice things up.
I love the way a jacket feels that’s been folded and packed away and buttoned in the winter cold; that’s been washed and restitched, shlepped to sandy beaches and worn around the fire on summer nights.
Opening a shoe box and smelling the glue and leather fires me up as much as anyone. But the memories woven into shoes that are scuffed from miles of walking atop cobblestone streets make me remember where I’ve been and what I love.
My things bring me joy, and I’m okay with that.