It can’t be a good sign that my husband’s mantra this week has been “they are just things.” He said it to me over and over again this week as I prepared my boxes for the movers. He had to say it another half dozen times when the movers were packing our stuff and we began to pull some items out of the “to go to Costa Rica” pile. He had to whisper it to me again when I woke up at 1:39 panicked that we had not packed my favorite and somewhat rare Dali print. I know that things are just things but for me they are also tied to memories and create a sense of security.
My Dali print reminds of the last summer I spent in Belgium with my mother and Harald. One afternoon in Brugge near the Belfry Tower we took a wrong turn and stumbled across a Dali exhibition. I was lost in the space that couldn’t have been larger than a three car garage for hours. There were sculptures, sketches and even a few furniture pieces. I was especially intrigued by the infamous ruby red lip couch. I wanted so badly to hop the velvet rope and take a quick sit. Before leaving I bought two prints that reminded of de Cervantes’ Don Quixote. A few weeks later I returned with a friend to find the exhibition gone. I told myself that it must have disappeared into a puff of smoke like a magician.
It seems so apropos that at a time in the move where it feels like I am tilting windmills that I would cling to this print. In the end the print is coming to Costa Rica out of its frame in a cardboard tube. I will have to make peace with the items that didn’t make and try to remember that they are after all just things.