I thought I’d watch a movie tonight, since I wanted to do something other than write. I’m tired. We threw in a DVD of The Village. Not that compelling, I am keeping an eye on it out of one corner while surfing the ‘net when I was struck by a very profound memory.
In the movie they were reviewing the stories that brought the people to the village. Murder. Violence. Rage. The things we don’t like to think about, but which are sometimes thrust into our minds as a memory of some significance. Like this one.
I came home from work one evening, my two little girls in tow behind me, the end of a long day. We lived in the main floor suite of an apartment. Not quite a dump, but not exactly living the middle class dream, either, it was a tired looking dive.
When I put the key in the lock, the door thunked into something behind it. I nudged the door a bit and looked through the opening, and there was my ironing board in the way. I knew in a moment that I had been robbed. Why would anyone want to rob me, I thought? I had so little already.
I tried to keep things low key in front of the kids, but it’s hard to hide all the mess when your worthless stuff has been strewn all over place. The good stuff wasn’t strewn, of course, because it was gone! Later it was hard to hide the laughter over the fact that the buggers had stolen things like my computer and a ukulele nestled inside a case that my Dad made by hand, but they had left the 20 year old TV behind. Dang! It was one of those classic TV’s, you know, with no remote control, and knobs that you had to pull to turn the set on or off. The reception on it was pretty bad too, so there was an elastic band that went from the tuning knob to the on/off knob to keep the screen snow down to a bare minimum. It would have been easy for the bad guys to get rid of it; they could have thrown it into the dumpster for me.
In seriousness, the bad guys might have been a previous tenant; they had entered the suite with a key and then passed stuff out of a window after they ripped the security bars out of the way. Guess I could have secured those bars better and at least slowed them down a bit. Perhaps then would have thought twice about the quality of the stuff they were hauling. I mentioned we were not in a penthouse right? Although a lot of the stuff was old junk and worth very little (especially according to the insurance company), it took me a while before I could actually replace most of it. The inconvenience was things like the laundry quarters, because I had a need to wash absolutely everything that was in that apartment, and the computer that was old and antiquated. The heartbreak was the blond wooden ukulele case with brass corners and a fuzzy lining. Although you may not appreciate the ukulele as an instrument, you might relate to the case as something lovingly handmade by my Dad.
Twelve years later, last summer, I finally replaced that ukulele, and my Dad has once again made me a beautiful wooden case, complete with brass corners. Thanks Dad, again.