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finding lost things

So many annoyances resolved. On Sunday, when the kids were here, we wanted to start the gas fire stove but I could not find the remote. The stove doesn’t work without it. I searched, increasingly frustrated – where the hell did I put it when I turned off the pilot in May? No idea. I finally called the company that installed it and asked if I could buy a replacement. And then I found it, in a logical place, just tucked a bit further back in the cabinet and thoughtfully wrapped in a plastic bag that made it invisible. 

While I was looking for it, I found a few other things I’d spent ages looking for. Aren’t there estimates about how much time we waste over our lifetimes looking for things? 

On Wednesday I went to the Y for a class, and afterward, rushing back for a haircut, I realized I’d left my gold bangle in the locker. This famous bangle is in the memoir. After Edgar asked me to marry him, we went to an antique store on Rue Royale in New Orleans; we couldn’t afford a ring so he bought an antique gold bangle. It has GLY engraved inside; I decided it was for Gladys Louise Young. Or maybe God Loves You. I’ve worn it for 41 years. When I cycled at top speed back to the Y to get it, it wasn’t there. 

I thought, It’s just a thing. It can be replaced. You have health and hearth; it doesn’t matter. But of course, it does. It’s a symbol of my marriage, of my love for a man, for what we created together. We’ve been divorced for 30 years, but the man, and our love for each other and our children, matters deeply. 

I reported it, and today Doris who runs the health club phoned to say she was holding it. A staff member had found it on the floor and put it away for safekeeping. 

It’s only a thing. But it is a beautiful thing that’s been on my wrist for four decades, I’m happy it’s found. I will have a good ride to the Y tomorrow.

Unlike the one I had on Wednesday. Downtown Toronto right now is a hellscape. For the first time, I thought, Can I go on living here? There’s construction everywhere, overwhelming noise, huge trucks revving and speeding, jackhammers, cranes, concrete trucks taking over streets and sidewalks. Why do they have the right to squeeze out pedestrians and drivers so developers can get richer? 

And the Y itself is, as one friend said, a ghost town. I went to the class Carole is struggling to bring back to life, once about 30 old friends sweating together. Wednesday there were 5 of us, spread over half the gym, wearing masks, barely able to understand a word she said. I hope the Y, like countless other businesses, recovers from Covid. 

Have watched fabulous documentaries on Helen Keller, Oscar Peterson, and last night on PBS, the universe. Brilliant.

More Hallowe’en in Cabbagetown. I will ignore the event myself. But the ‘hood goes mad.

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2 Responses to “finding lost things”

  1. theresa says:

    I'm so glad you found your bangle. Of course it's more than just a thing. We need symbols now more than ever, I think. A few years ago, I thought I'd lost the little bag with my parents' wedding rings and I kept asking myself, What kind of careless woman loses her parents' rings? But I'd put them in a safe place, the "secret" drawer in a new box for my jewellery, and I'd simply forgotten that the drawer existed! I've passed the rings along to my daughter, along with some other gold, and she's going to have something made for herself with them. And I won't have to worry about where I've put them.

  2. beth says:

    That's so familiar, Theresa, putting special things into a special place and forgetting where. My mother used to keep her jewelry in the flour bin and then saying it had been stolen. Giving those things away is the best idea. But no one is getting my bangle until the end.

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.

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