As Stephanie are getting prepared to leave for Turkey, one of the most inevitable and dreadful things that goes along with it is the whole packing/moving thing. It is a bit more difficult than usual because in most cases, we’d just pack everything up and move it to a different space, but it’s not that simple. As we pack, we must determine what is coming with us to Turkey, what is going into storage, what we are giving away or lending out and to whom and what we are simply throwing away never to see again.
With some things, this is easy. We love our bed and have a place to store it. We have a lousy kitchen table and broken chairs that go with it, so they are getting tossed. But with some things, it is rather difficult. I’m having trouble trying to determine what to do with all my t-shirts. Over the years, I have collected so many t-shirts it is staggering. What’s worse is that I have not boughten a t-shirt from a store in the past decade and yet I have dozens, perhaps more than 100. I took a bin of t-shirts home to my family and let them fight over them. My little sister claimed first pick and some were only big enough for my dad. My mom and little brother had to fight over the rest. I really enjoyed some of those shirts and was sad to see them go. I always prided myself on having a very eclectic t-shirt collection and it was hard to see my little sister pick up some of those shirts and say, “I love this one,” and race off with it.
The last t-shirt I bought is one of my favorites. It comes from Decorah, Iowa and it has a picture of a newborn chick on it with the catch phrase: “I love quality chicks.” They make the equivalent for girls that says, “Another quality chick” with the same basic logo. My dad really wanted that one, but I’m not sure it will fit him and I don’t think my little sister will be comfortable wearing it, so that one may come back into my possession someday.
I also prided myself on having more years worth of Knollapalooza (a music festival I always went to during college and beyond) t-shirts than anybody in the world, but I’ve already given away a number of those shirts. I’m keeping my oldest one (from 1999) because it is the shirt I ran the Twin Cities marathon in and it just has too many memories inside of it for me to part with. Plus it is white and my favorite undershirt.
It’s been tough trying to sort out the clothes. I’ve thrown away a few t-shirts I didn’t even remember I owned and have another bin ready to give away. I hope such nostalgia isn’t so difficult with everything we own. We tried to decide which DVDs to take with us and we have a pretty solid selection, but we’re leaving behind some solid stuff. I’m not sure we’ll take many books at all. I’m trying to make my way through the Harry Potter series so I can get my fill while we are gone. It is going to be hard to leave those behind, especially since the final two movies (book 7, split in two) will most likely come out while we are gone. But I’m sure we’ll be able to find a theater showing them in English.
All these nostalgic temptations of America make me wonder how much I’ll truly miss America, Minnesota in particular. I know I’ll miss my friends and family greatly and that will be tougher than I can imagine. But how much of my enjoyment of life is due to being where I am. I hope not very much, because it’s going to be bad enough being away from so many people that I enjoy living life with.
It is rather amazing how little you are aware of how attached you are to things until you are faced with the possibility of losing them.