This is an object of objects, both symbolic and practical. Like a tickle trunk or Mary Poppins’ travel bag, this old suitcase is a box of dreams and memories, represented by things old and older.
Although apocryphal, my memory tells me that this suitcase once belonged to my great-grandmother – my mom’s dad’s mom, known to all as Nanny. It somehow made its way to my mom, who gave it to me on the occasion of my first trip to Caddy Lake Girl Guide Camp – hence the name scrawled every which way across the case. It survived at least two trips to that camp, and a few other trips besides, and has now become a treasured cornucopia of my objet d’heart.
The suitcase doesn’t live at home with me these days. In my small-ish living space, many objects and things and general stuff are relegated to storage lockers at home or away, and so are only really seen during a move or a search for something else. As such, the suitcase came home a few weeks ago during a locker move, to be revisited for a few weeks before going back into the archives.
Why do I like this one? Partly its age, partly its unclear past, but mostly because, as an object that seems from another time, it feels right as a home for objects from other times in my life.
I worry every time I move it or open it. Is the handle loose? Have the contents rotted away to dust or grown mouldy? Will the latch finally break and require prying open? Thankfully, not yet. Some of the “satin” lining is drooping and falling apart at the seams, but otherwise it’s still a bit like me – sturdy, a bit dingy and droopy, but otherwise okay and content to keep doing its job.
The next several objects will be from this treasure trove, and are truly part of the history of Robyn in objects. From clothes to trinkets, most of these things take me way back down memory lane, and represent the best of nostalgia – fond memories and funny stories.
But next up will be the book that inspired it all, before I even realized it.