My husband saves everything from his past. Everything. It is amazing what he can come up with on almost a moment’s notice. The little warming hat in Christmas colors that was placed on Garrett’s head after delivery in 1996 (I had said it would be cute to take a picture of Mouse, our cat, in a tiny hat to wish our friends a Merry Christmas). His competition cycling garb from age 14. Every driver’s license he ever had (he was disappointed to find that here in SC we have to turn those in: there goes that collection).
I collect in the present and for the future. It is more like obsessively putting “like” things together than remembering a personal past. My collections are to try to create a personal past that did not happen (there’s a bolt of understanding). See, it helps to write.
I do have one fantastic lidded basket which has/had some interesting things in it: a personal letter from Hubert Humphrey, a letter from my father to me at about age 20 where he says it is ok that having to buy new tires for the car was way beyond my financial ability and he would do it, some old primitive Chinese toys made in Shenzhen, The People’s Republic, in about 1980, when that booming city was a village of dirt roads, a pair of white women’s gloves that say “I like Ike“, a huge button that says “Whistle for Change”, and the following.
This little artifact has traveled with me in this basket for more than forty years. It probably survived because it is so small, and it had significant traveling partners, like the letter from my father who died so young. I do not remember having it. There is information on the reverse.
The “Valley of the Flowers” along with being synonymous with our little home city, is a yearly celebration of same, and featured a little arts and crafts show is where my husband and I met in 1971. We first dated that weekend, and several times afterward that summer. Then we went on to have other lives. He found me again in 2008. And it is me who has the document!