Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pass It On

I went to an estate sale the other day and it was a goldmine!
Housed in a turn of the century barn were four floors of picking glory: furniture, glassware, china, dolls, fabrics, architectural elements, tools, luggage, antique lumber, clothes, haberdashery. We even picked up the last 68 bricks we had been needing to finish our garden project.


It was a frenzy and it was cheap.
There were people everywhere.
Honestly, it was pretty fun to be part of the hunt.

Yet, it was not until my third visit inside, (my husband and I had been tag teaming a bit back and forth between the truck and the property and the barn to prevent our toddler from breaking things or falling on rusty nails), that a set of different feelings washed over me.
On that last trip in, I had walked in with purpose right up to the forth floor figuring I'd work my way down the levels.

I started in the walkin-in plywood clothes closet. The door half closed behind me. I went through the hangers quickly before I realized I was standing on eight inches of cast-offs, dry cleaning plastic and costumes. I started picking it up as if someone would catch me stepping on their things. But, they were no longer someone's things. When it all seemed like it was too much to pick up - and it was - I went down stairs to the next level and started over, avoiding feeling sad about the woman who just died and her husband selling off all the property that they clearly spent a lifetime building.

It was not until I got home and started washing all the pretty little cocktail plates and wares I scored did I start thinking about whose things I was touching once again. While I rinsed and scrubbed every piece I imagined how happy these things must have made the original owner and how proud she must have been to have had them to use during holidays or swanky soirees.

I chose not to digress in to the feelings of mourning I began to feel although they were creeping up. Instead, I chose to think that the woman who used to own these little luxuries would be glad to know that the woman who owns them now is just as proud and grateful to have and use and them in the happy moments she'll use them for.

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