I have touched and examined all the bits and pieces necessary to run my life and ever more ruthlessly choose what to keep and carry. Weighing practicality and sentiment against the Gross Vehicle Weight rating of the Jolly Swag. Much went to the yard sale, was delivered to Goodwill, the local school district or even a local women’s shelter.
I don’t think you can know what your true treasures are unless your quest takes you into the fire of don’t-look-back downsizing. Some of my friends have done this. Some have moved from the four-bedroom house where they raised their kids, to the quarter-size two-bedroom retirement condo. My move from a two-bedroom condo plus a1000 square foot office to the micro-planet of my 28’ motorhome was right up there on my fun list with cleaning up after my pet elephant and root canal work. It was my intention not to store anything. There are too many stories of people storing their precious baubles and visiting them a year later to find they’ve paid $1000 to store $500 worth of stuff you don’t want to touch because of the mildew. But I did keep a few personal things only to give myself a little more time to become clear on whom to pass them on to.
I think it was a good personal exercise to identify the irreducible minimum of artifacts that I value. I listed them below. The first item is the one I value most. Everything else ties for second.
1.My father’s butcher tools. A steak knife, a boning knife, a cleaver, and an edge-straightening bone. They were probably 30 years old or more when they retired 25 years ago, but they are bright and ready to work today.
3. Hand-carved sign, “AL Levenson, he Yacht Broker” from the 70’s in Florida.
4.Five pieces of artwork. Two posters from Around Puerto Rico races nearly 40 years ago, two Henry Sandbank dye-transfer prints that must be close to 50 years old, and a print of Cheers, 3rd place finisher in the ’68 Observer Single Handed Trans-Atlantic Race.
5.My stamp and coin collections
6.High school and college yearbooks
7.Twenty-four yacht racing trophies.
I managed to find a home for my grandparents’ 135- year-old samovar.
I carry with me a few pieces of raku sculpted by Mas, for 60 years one of my most durable friends.
I am curious what interesting things you may have buried like pirate treasure in the back of a closet and, of course, the stories that go with them.