It was shocking to reduce my colorful, smelly, loud life to a stack of sepia boxes, smelling of corrugated paper and rattling faintly. Not even a fiance-propelled ride on the carry-cart down the creepily overpainted Guardian Storage hallway lifted the pall.
Matt and I packed our entire lives into a 13 x 10 x 13 room last week. They are in storage in Pittsburgh–the picture on the left is of the first third of our boxes.
Though it is comforting to all of our stuff is dry and well-packed, we keep finding things we wish we hadn’t stored. Those Arabic DVDs? In a box in Pittsburgh. Laptop fan cleaner? In a box in Pittsburgh. Make-up? In a box in Pittsburgh.
There are certainly good uses of boxes; but something about rattling the overhead door down and slamming the padlock closed felt unduly final. I wanted to tell me stuff–“don’t worry! I’ll be back in August.”
But unimbued with meaning, masked by boxes, it had no character to anthropomorphize, so I left, silent.
“Few rich men own their property; the property owns them.”–Robert Ingersoll, speech, New York, 29 October 1896