On Friday afternoon I sold my favorite ‘toy’; a 2002 dark blue Dodge Dakota pickup truck. I was in mint condition, low mileage, no rust, clean, and a smooth runner. In the six years I’ve had the truck it’s never been outside in Minnesota’s winters. (I store it in my garage while I’m in Florida and can’t wait to get back behind the wheel when I get back). What I enjoyed most about the truck was that it was a manual 5-speed shifter. Did I get a fair price? Yes. Did I have second thoughts? Yes. Did I really need the truck? No. Did I need the money? Kinda.
Friday made me think more seriously than usual about ‘attachments’–for I was more attached to the truck than to my Florida car- a 2014 Altima. After the new owners drove away I took some time to take an inventory of things around the house. I’ve had the good fortune to travel to many remote parts of the world and have numerous souvenirs from China, Russia, Africa . . . they’re interesting and maybe even valuable–but do I feel any sense of attachment to any of the artifacts? Not really. I am attached to pictures of my grandkids (and my children when they were younger), several books that I’ve read over the years, some music CD’s, and a few movies. Maybe because these are, in their own way, timeless–not priceless–but timeless.
And, I’ll be honest, I have far too many things–especially clothes and shoes and caps and jackets. Why? I’m not a hoarder by any means, but I do accumulate stuff. Twice a year I go through my closets and fill a box or two of clothes, etc. and bring them to the Veteran’s Shop, Salvation Army or Goodwill. While dropping things off I invariably do a quick run through the shop and yes . . . I find a t-shirt that catches my fancy. (A shirt that will probably be in next year’s charity run). Yet I always feel good when I give things away; especially those items that are ‘like new’.
Now, obviously, I’m not a ‘minimalist’. I could get by just fine with one pair of jeans when I have six. Also, I tend to have favorites that I wear almost all the time. I would be just fine with one small closet–I think.
Anyhow, today I look outside my front window on Fifth Avenue West and all I see is emptiness where my truck used to be and I’m sad. But, perhaps, letting go of that might make me look more closely at what I need; I mean really need. That’s beyond phone and computer and furniture, of course.
It’s now Sunday morning. Unconsciously I look for my truck keys so I can run over to the convenience store for the Hibbing and Minneapolis papers. No keys . . . no truck . . . I think I’m over the loss now. In the Sunday newspapers I see some photos of the aftermath of Hurricane Michael. Thousands of others know the meaning of ‘loss’ far better than I am likely to ever experience–they lost everything; everything of a lifetime. Puts matters into perspective.
Darn! ! ! Now I’m wondering . . . do I really need my little place in Naples, Florida? How can I justify than when I have a perfectly fine home in northern Minnesota?