There are times in everyone’s life ,even if they have been the side kick of Dawood Ibrahim all their lives ,when Bhagawad Gita starts sounding true and one regrets not having taken its teachings seriously , specially while inside the temples of consumerism called malls.
I have been having these pre -enlightening moments every time we decide to shift house. In last 8 years I have set up and wound up house at 5 different places and each time being in a different phase of life. Each time Hubby and I start up with a delusional WOW , pretending to be two great travel enthusiasts of NAT GEO willing to survive on a backpack , but as things start progressing we are reduced to two house holders, prisoners of our own attachments to worldly things and trying to preserve the material things of our house which would bring even a Magpie to shame.
Once we decide to move ,for initial few days the conversations revolves around “ should we keep this or chuck this?” This phase of chucking things brings a great sense of achievement .We throw expired medicines, old magazines , clothes and shoes . These decisions are actually easy to make as they are about the things anyway out of use and are just lying around for a long time as there was no urgency to make a decision.
There are too many deliberations before some decisions based on ground realities whether to chuck , dispose ,sell or give away certain things .We may have had some heated arguments prior to chucking things but once we are in full agreement about chucking certain things and show them the door ,we are pleased as punch to look at the cobwebs underneath them in the empty space they have created. After all ,it wasn’t a mere material thing chucked ,it was a victory over our tendency of attachment to material possessions.
The sight of dust and cobwebs never disappoint us. We gleefully hug each other after each small thing sent out of the house. Out go his old study table and technical manuals and I hug him ; out go my old magazines and physics books and he hugs me back ; I remember so very distinctively that our most passionate hug was when we threw away a bag full of video cassettes .Yup ! the video cassettes of movies we have always been planning to see together some day . The darned technology did not want to wait until we got our leisure. Only one decade more and both kids would be in college ,we done with changing jobs and places and then all we needed to do was buy chips ,curl up in bed and watch those movies which we had selected so carefully. On the hind sight we were not throwing away our dream of togetherness , we were chucking only the store keeping job associated with it plus the possibility of chips being replaced by metformin cannot be hushed away.
A time came to chuck a plethora of old mouses , a UPS of our very first PC ,many wires and USBs. We had contemplated very deeply about giving the monitor and key board away to someone who needed it but the search for the ‘right candidate’ has always been very difficult , ( you do not agree? go ask Congress party).
We still have our very co owned molded ,non wheeled suitcases which had travelled with us on our honeymoon and now leading a retired life housing old mosquito nets and bed sheets for two decades . Once the honeymoon was over ,as an integral part of our household those suitcases for a long time symbolized romance in our marriage .Being on the loft, forgotten , catching dust yet still usable and reachable .While we were paying school fees, EMIs and entertaining ourselves with kids’ annual functions ,the romance was waylaid for attention dumped inside those suitcases. We are keeping these suitcases till our last breath for the sake of nostalgia ,this is one of the rarest points of agreement we have reached .
I found it easy to give away usable stuff like kids’ blankets, old bicycles, school bags ,toys, CDs etc ,happy that some other kids would use it .But one has to be a real brave heart to throw useless stuff . I have no definite answer to what to do with kid’s scrape books ,their school projects and few letters , containing sonorous sugary feelings, exchanged between hubby and myself which now both of us are apprehensive to revisit or even show to each other for the fear of them sounding like election manifesto.
Mom consistently added to this dilemma by every year knitting sweaters for her darling son- in -law who never could find a job in a hill station . His oil career took him to various sea shores and deserts and, with every job change I resignedly buy copious quantities of moth balls to preserve her love knit in wool.
You think from heart and allow to get yourself emotional ,take it from
a veteran yours truly that you will end up carrying
even the plastic tubs and mugs and brushes
from your washroom but if you let Bhagwad Gita’s
philosophy of “ only soul transcends the body and material” rub off on you ,you would just float in the superior surreal state of trance and would tell yourself
that you can take only as much with you
in your suitcases and rest is the soft copy
in memory .