Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Secret Life of Things

Long may you run
Although these changes have come

With your chrome heart shining
in the sun
 Long may you run
.....Neil Young
First, of course, hooray!  We don't have Romney for president, and there is still hope that America may become a more humane, sane country.  If he had won, I'd be writing about my immanent move to New Zealand or Panama..............

So, a domestic matter that I felt deserved a bit of Dia de los Muertos honor as well.  It's time for me to let go of my "$3,500.00 Home", Lucy.  I can't afford to maintain her as a "second home", so it's time for her to hopefully find a new owner who will enjoy her as I have.  Housing may be going up, but Lucy cost me $3,500.00, was and is low-energy (at least, when standing), recycled,  remodeled (by me), had no mortgage, no property taxes, and if I didn't like the neighborhood, I moved her.  I realize motor home housing is not that good for people living in cold climates, but for people in the Southwest, and particularly seniors on a low budget, it's a solution to low cost housing.

I've had some happy times in Lucy, and although she isn't much up to long road trips anymore, she can still be settled somewhere and be a nice home for someone.  And what I think about as I sadly prepare to place ads is how I hope I can find someone who will appreciate my old home, take care of her.  Be friends.

We are such a disposible society, hardly  anyone understands my thinking in this way.  And yet, "things" have a kind of life as well, and deserve honor and gratitude for the service they've given.   Whether a house, or a car, or a teapot, things are infused with the energy of those who have owned and used them.  A fortunately enjoyed item can emanate peace, or comfort, or want to touch it, sit in it, sleep in it, eat off of it, look at it.  It just feels good and you don't know why, and that "mana" one feels goes beyond design.
The disposibility of our culture has not only caused environmental destruction, but it's also caused us to lose this sensibility, a kind of "6th sense" that tuned us to the "secret life of things".

For example, people used to inherit collections of precious china, cups and saucers that were proudly brought out to serve tea to guests.  Those teacups (and I have a few of my own) are infused with the ancient aroma of ancestral tea leaves, and the hands and lips of people long gone.  Imagine people sitting to tea, eating their cakes and enjoying the lovely patterns of flowers on the cup in their hand, colors emerging from the amber liquid of the tea?  As a child I used to play with those fragile little cups and imagine their use and history.  How can a disposible Starbucks cup of coffee even begin to compare? Or how about my 75 year old sewing machine, which still works?  Think of the women who cherished this precious machine, kept it oiled and replaced the belts over the years, the changing fashions that were constructed for parties and work under that needle?  

So, my old mobile home, my friend.  Thank you for years of shelter and good dreams, for meals cooked and roads wandered.  Long may you run.


Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

It's beautiful! I love all the color, the feel of it. So if you're selling her, where will you move?

Lauren said...


I've inherited my mother's house, along with her cats and garden, as she is now in assisted living. And the situation keeps me indefinately in Tucson, alas, so a house without wheels is probably better for now. But I miss my gypsy life every day........