Sunday, April 27, 2014
This isn’t about the latest hit musical from Disney. It’s about a life. A life on hold. A life, well, frozen.
U-Haul calls them rooms. I call them storage units. In them sits the difference between life before and life after the Great Recession of 2008. They’re three-dimensional barometers of the downsizing the long-term unemployed have absorbed.
Ours is filled with furniture, appliances, clothing and kitchen ware; the list goes on and on and on. These are the things my mate and I hold onto. The things we have invested with the hope that one day we will have use for them again.
Call them objects of faith.
Putting them on e-Bay or giving them away or throwing them out would be to acknowledge that things aren’t going to change. And we can’t do that. Not yet.
So we pay a monthly storage fee equivalent to two tanks of gasoline (and this is with a discount from a friend who’s an employee at the facility) to indulge our fantasy. Or deny the future. I can’t figure out which.
I touch the sofa that used to be the centerpiece of our living room. Thumb the designer shirts which no longer fit because of my stress-fueled consumption of junk food. I gaze at the washing machine and drier we picked out, and wonder if they would even work after being inactive for so long.
I realize, ironically-enough, that I would actually enjoy putting a load of wash in them, if only to enjoy the significance of such an act. I also realize how unlikely this is to happen.
Perhaps this is a tomb.
I retrieve the book I came for, pull down the metal door, secure the padlock and head to the front office where I pay the rent.
Hope, for better or worse, springs eternal.