Yesterday passed in a blur. Truck and trailer, boxes and paper, sheets and towels. Things seemed to come in pairs which made a certain kind of sense of the disorder.
I woke this morning at five to finish my reading assignment for tonight’s book group. My connection to the group is back east and I will meet the members alone tonight. As Steve and I furiously unpacked garment boxes to clear a path to the toilet I actually thought about what outfit I might wear. Perhaps denver is changing me already…or perhaps Vermont was as comfortable to me as my dansko clogs which almost always seemed appropriate footwear.
Today is a new day and I am trying a sort of meditative unpacking in contrast to yesterday’s whirlwind. Steve is shut in his office with, like, 289 boxes taking a meeting on east coast time. There is no microwave here so I worked with Oliver on his oatmeal, showing him the stove and the kettle.
Both boys have eaten a bit so I sit with a row of boxes in front of me at the dining room table. I unwrap the items as if each is a present. My present, telling the story of our past and future.
A glass from michigan tech. Leo’s Star Wars mugs that hold his nightly warm milk. A teapot from Tiffany’s a present from my mothers college roommate that I have faithfully wrapped and moved at least 14 times. I use it for flowers despite my love of tea.
Now my grandmothers china which we use more than I ever thought, because I have given more dinner parties than I ever thought with Steve as an enthusiastic chef.
I imagine a party here, perhaps just wine and cheese (and beer.) maybe these very women I will meet tonight. With their partners. Our book was Gilead, a long letter from a dying minister to his young son. It’s prose was lovely, it’s story far from mine.
I come to a covered jar, a gift from a friend who is a potter in Vermont. The movers have taped round and round it to keep it closed. We keep pink salt crystals in it. I tell myself tobe careful as I unwind the tape. I am too focused on peeling it cleanly from the surface. Within e final twist I imagine hitherto salt puring out, onto my feet and the dining room floor. I hold the jar together, but not me. I cry a little bit.
It is the potter who makes me sad. A wedding present he gave Steve and I despite not being invited. He represents our Vermont. The creativity,the kindness, the small way he has entered our lives. It is not our dear friends I miss. I know I will see them. It is this man and the many other friends like him.
I set the jar down with the mugs. I want to put it on the counter where it will live but I hold myself here. I don’t want to escape this unpacking, remembering and imagining just yet,
A few packages later I find Mrs Pepper. I was upset yesterday to unpack her mister without her. I stand up quickly, ignoring my plan to stay put and sheets of paper shower the ground with the imagined salt spill.
I bring her to them. Another pair.