I went to Europe with a high school group during the summer of ’73 and brought back, among other things, these wooden shoes from the Netherlands. I have never done anything with them, not one thing–ever. Upon my return, they promptly went into a closet where they stayed for decades, only to be removed during various moves and put back into another closet, thus fulfilling their primary function of taking up space for years on end.
And I still have them.
…but not for long.
When I unearthed them the other day, in the midst of this seemingly endless, beyond-enormous purging of our past, my first thought was that finally, I had a use for them! Of course, they would be great work clogs! So I put them on and headed out towards the garden. They were incredibly uncomfortable. A half dozen steps later, the hard truth hit me. These are useless, beautiful–yes, but not loved enough to take up any more space in my life. Goodbye wooden shoes–
Also goodbye John Lennon poster, forest scented soap-on-a-roap, old class notes (including my tenth-grade World History notebook that was entirely blank–good thing I’ve kept it for forty two years!), never- used exercise bands, the wrong sized fountain pump that was never returned, countless gift bags, the Happy Birthday headband, my trusty old MBT sandals (loved these-wore them out), the Walkman, the pull-up bar, African jewelry…
Wendell Berry said, “Don’t own so much clutter that you will be relieved to see your house catch fire.”
We’re getting there. There’s only one way out of this…and that’s through it!
More later, gotta get back to work!