First, let me say that hoarding is tragic. Everything about accumulating ‘stuff’ to one’s demise is just sad. Sad in the way that a love of some-thing can outweigh the love for oneself. Tragic because we have found entertainment in this type of tragedy of others (as in, the television show – Hoarders) which is an extreme example.
I understand how it can start, I even understand how just an accumulation of ‘things’ can eventually turn into hoarding. I also am seeing first hand the mentality of what happens when you live through times as desperate as the depression where you have nothing. Then all of the sudden you have the means and there is ample availability of all – the – stuff. It is like sending a kid loose in a candy store.
Last Saturday I was called out on an emergency, and since I set my own ‘writing’ hours and don’t have a day job, it was easy for me to pack my backpack and get on a plane at short notice to help a friend out. Long-story -> short version, I am currently helping a dear friend of mine whose mother just passed and father is very ill. We are having to go through the house and pack up dad to get him ready to live in an assisted care facility and prepare the estate for a sale. This sale will include not only everything in the 2500sq foot house (minus dad and his prized possessions), but 8 cars, a camper, a 4-wheeler, a boat and all the contents of four out-buildings full of stuff. Treasured, precious, hobby-filled, stuff. It is an accumulation of their lives together, and yet, there are times when we are cleaning out a closet wondering ‘what were they thinking?’ as we throw away bags and bags of old cards. Old, used, sent, written on, christmas, birthday, easter, mothers day, and anniversary cards. Freezers are full of food dated back to the early 90’s, and dollar store knick-knacks are intermingled with precious (and valuable) antiques. Plastic bag filled tupperwear containers filled with full silver sets with antique mother-of-pearl handles.
The last few days have been more of a treasure-hunt than an organize-and-pack-dad-for-impending-move. Although we have 3 weeks left to go through everything before the Estate Sale, and I’m getting a little nervous. The more we go through, the more precious-antique-one-of-a-kind-type items we are finding in very random and unusual places (confederate dollars in the sewing kit?). Which means, we are going to have to go through EVERYTHING.
It has been fun, it has been exhausting and it has been everything in-between. Thankfully, my friend is awesome with a wicked sense of humor, and I love her. So, it has been full of laughs (and a few blackmail photo’s).
There is no internet at the house, so I’m trying to get into town to post up more of my adventures as often as I can. Yes, there are still places in the United States which do not have internet access and you have to GO somewhere BY CAR to get online. Shocking, but true.
So, that is where I am, and what I am up to. Thanks for being patient while I am out of internet connection availability for a while. In the meantime….
….I’ll keep you posted. (hehehe posted…. hehehehehe)
p.s. *For the record – I’m not calling my best-dear-friend’s parent’s ‘hoarders’, but I am considering calling my folks and begging them to do a big purge. As in….. ‘isn’t it time you sold all your stuff and just traveled the world with a backpack?’ kind of purge. Because as much fun as it has been these last few days, I’m not sure I want to do it again.
p.p.s. Red Robin has Wi-fi and a very very happy margarita…. jus’ sayin.
p.p.p.s – UPDATE – I think I have convinced my mom to live like a gypsy. The only catch is… she wants to do it in Fiji… I’m thinking, this could kill two birds with one stone and am currently hatching a plan…… (insert evil laugh here).