Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Memories in the Clutter

   De-cluttering the garage has a much nicer sound to it than cleaning the garage. Mr. Bruce has been cleaning the garage for a couple of weeks, just a bit at a time. Actually,he has been working his way through a three-car garage. I’ll spare you the details;it’s not a pretty picture.
   Last week he tackled the third garage area, the one only used for storage of lawn equipment, tools, and other men stuff. And of course, boxes and boxes of stuff long ago stashed there with a promise to go through them later. The later period for one side, the third garage, was over 15 years.
   Mr. Bruce moved his mother and step-dad to a retirement apartment in the mid-nineties. They were coming from a large house to a very small one-bedroom apartment, downsizing big time. The brothers Crim had garage sales and threw away tons of stuff, but there were some things they couldn't let go just yet. Bruce uncovered these boxes last week.
   Bruce was so overwhelmed with memories that he had to stop the first day. Harold loved to do woodworking in his basement workshop. He would spend hours making projects. Harold had packed his hand tools into a couple of large cardboard boxes, these things meant too much to throw away, and besides someone could use them.
   Saturday Mr. Bruce asked if I would sit out there and help him decide which things to keep, which items could be donated to a thrift store, and the things that could be tossed. I was surprise how many boxes of Jane’s things were still out there, I thought we had already given those to a thrift store. Anyway, after a couple of hours of sorting, I came back inside and left him to his working and remembering.
    Later I went to see how he was doing and spotted a bookcase some of this stuff had been sitting on. It was covered with dust and grime, yet I could see a beautiful wood finish. “What are you going to do with that?” I asked. He replied he was going to break it into pieces that would fit the trash container. NO WAY! He cleaned the dirt off, polished it with Pledge, and uncovered a six foot handcrafted bookcase. Harold had to have built it many years ago. It has a bookcase at each end and a desk area in the middle.
    I still don’t know how Mr. Bruce managed to get this very heavy piece of furniture down the narrow hallway to my office area. But here it sits. My head-vase ladies and a few of my stuffed animal friends are on the top shelf.
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