Whenever I write about a fictional character, I think about what they carry, as inspired by Tim O’Brien’s amazing short story, “The Things They Carried,” and subsequent creative writing prompts I’ve come across based on the basic premise that what you keep on your person or by your side reveals quite a bit about you. Friends have been asking, so today I thought I’d share a few pics of our home and the things we carried here.
|Where we veg…
Thanks to Ryan’s surfing memorabilia,
we can at least pretend the ocean isn’t an hour and a half away!
The concept of “our home” in and of itself is a wonderful thing to be able to say after a year of long-distance living! We’ve successfully merged his and mine (it helps that the majority of the furniture is rented with the apartment; such a convenient way to go when you and your belongings arrive by plane.)
|Where we dine.|
The move itself also helped us streamline–selling off my car, starter furniture, electronics that can’t convert down here, CDs, books (yes, I managed to part with a few) and their shelves, and all the stuff that ends up in a junk drawer that someone at a sidewalk sale ends up LOVING! Thanks to the knowledge of my friend Emily, the Chilenos have a perfect word for junk-drawer chatzky, but my Spanish amnesia will have to settle on a literal translation of junk drawer (“basura cajón”) for now.
|A little reminder of home in the morning.
I have grown to truly love Chile’s best powdered instant coffee!
|Where we drop our keys and mail,
though the only mail we’ve gotten so far
are bills that are shrink-wrapped like junkmail,
so we have to be careful not to throw those out!
Plus, a whole bunch of giveaways, like houseplants and clothes and coffee mugs to friends and cousins and Goodwill. For instance, an old typewriter–that one was hard to part with sentimentally speaking since I think an old typewriter is pretty much my personal metaphor when it comes to the craft and tradition of writing, my until-recent skepticism of technology, and my true love affair with the remnants of decades of old–but it weighed a good 20 pounds, and there’s something lovely about knowing your cousin will have something that means a lot to you, and that she might think of you when she looks upon it, and maybe she won’t miss you quite as much as you’re missing her.
All of this means we’re traveling (relatively) light. But, as I’ve mentioned, we have the important things here with us. In addition to the writing table and the books, we have Ryan’s father’s guitar, framed photos of our friends and family, going-away gifts and cards wishing us well, and, yes, as pictured above, a couple of coffee mugs 🙂
|Enclosed patio beyond and previously posted about desk,
where the magic happens 🙂
All told, the list of “the things we carry” is surely longer than what you would run out of a burning building with, but it’s a much shorter list than I’ve managed over all these years of moving back and forth across the country… from my first 18 years in the SFBay, then east to Boston, New York, and London, back to New York, Westward Ho! back to SF, and now super south to Santiago. And as a perma-list-maker, I like a short one 🙂
As for where our things may head next, that’s still up in the air (we’re here for the foreseeable future) and that trust and mystery are part of the overall adventure.
|Technically a bedroom, but now Ryan’s music studio,
aka, where his magic happens 🙂
|Guest room that is not as small as it looks.
Okay, maybe it is, but we promise it’s cozy 🙂
|New houseplants, both indoors and out 🙂|