I'm wondering if we ever really start off intending to collect things, or if they just come to us, from friends and family, from trips to interesting stores or faraway places...the how and the why of collections.
For instance, I used to collect owls. It wasn't entirely voluntary. I tend to blame my friend Judith, who now lives in England and isn't here to tell me I'm wrong. I know she gave me my first set of owls, whom she named Manny, Moe and Jack. And I know she gave me, as a giggle, my final set of owls, which, as gifts from Judith generally do, arrived pre-named. I forget exactly what she called them, but I think of them as Mini-Manny-Moe. (Some day I might show you the Toronto Blue Jays build-a-bear she gave me.)
|Manny, Moe and Jack|
Kay Davies photo
By the early 1980s, I had too many owls. My young brother took it upon himself to count, and told me I had 80-some owls. So I quit, announced my retirement from the owl-collecting gig and told as many friends and family members as I could. Of course, the owls didn't stop coming, witness Mini-Manny-Moe who arrived after we had already changed centuries.
By default, also, I ended up collecting china. I didn't mean to, but my grandmother had four childless sisters, so who inherited the china plates the eldest auntie painted by hand in the early years of the 20th century? I did, as the eldest grandniece.
Auntie Eva's plates are packed away because I'm still living through The World's Slowest House Decorating, but I found online photos to give you an idea of the kind of thing she did.
Photos via Google
plates were mostly
Not exactly like
either of these,
However, when I moved to a small town in the BC interior to save money, I decided to get rid of some of my treasures. I asked one of my brothers (I won't say which one, to protect the innocent) to see how much my antique toaster, and my depression-glass cream and sugar set would fetch at an antique store in Vancouver. I know the toaster is displayed on a shelf in my brother's house, but have no idea where the depression glass is.
So, collecting can be depressing, and some day the whole collection will be toast. (You knew I'd say that, didn't you?)