On my mother's side, mostly 3rd and possible 4th generation Jews and on one branch of that side, survivors of the Spanish Inquisition. On my father's side, escapees from late 19th century and early 20th century pogroms. Everyone was safely in the United States of America during the Shoah.
Nevertheless, like many Jews raised during the 1950s and 1960s, I was raised to know at the very core of my being that I would always and forever be at risk for extermination or diaspora. Along with this certain knowledge came an essential instruction for living: be ready to flee.
Not that this was ever stated explicitly, but the message came through in the habit of double wrapping leftovers (i.e., waxed paper and then foil) lest we get into another relying-on-manna situation. The message came through in what my mother called Ruthless* Days, during which we'd redefine family treasures and ruthlessly toss or donate non-essential items.
Fast forward and here I am, a 1st century Jew (i.e., a follower of The Way) and married to a pack-rat, who hails from a long line pack-rats. God is such a kidder. Now, with a signed contract for a town-home and an anticipated closing date of August 23rd, the serious push to rethink possessions is on.
Truth to tell, that process has been ongoing in my life for nearly 60 years, so it has been relatively easy for me to take another pass through and toss yet more files, books, and tchotchkes. For Dan? Not so much but he's getting into the swing of debridement with admirable good humor, which is yet another reason I married him.
|Only three of many bins packed with memorabilia|
|A glimpse at the scary sorting process|
|A glimpse at the sacred recycling process|
|[create your own caption]|
* Dear Ruth: Sorry about this adjective. You know I could never live my life without you!