Three months have passed since I pulled everything out of the closets in an attempt to sort through my clothes and shoes and get everything organised. I just don’t have the space for my exhaustive wardrobe and the additional accessories that go with it. So my strategy that day was to pull everything out, returning to the closet only the items I wore regularly, sorting through everything else and somehow during the process determine what I needed in order to accommodate everything. At first I was just going to pile everything onto the bed and spend the afternoon taking stock of it all. However I know me, and as such I knew I wouldn’t get it all done in one afternoon. So everything that didn’t have a home in the closet ended up piled high on the dining table, spilling onto the chairs, rendering the furniture not only completely unusable but virtually unrecognisable. Everyday I would come home, glance at the pile with mild curiosity, wondering what exactly was buried in those heaps of clothes. For whatever reason I didn’t seem to be missing anything. My curiosity however was fleeting as I would quickly become distracted by something much more pressing, like binge watching Netflix…..so sadly I admit, that is exactly where everything remained…..for three long months, doing nothing more than collecting dust.
Until yesterday, yesterday was the day I was going to tackle the mountain and reclaim the dining table and chairs, and so it began, the duanting task of organising my closet. However something unexpected was happening a I began sorting through the piles, it felt like I was in some sort of rendition of ‘This Is Your Life’. I would hold up each article, and a moment from my past would flash before me. I remembered every purchase, where I bought it, where I wore it, what I wore it with….everything, including all the memories attached to it.
The Saree (Sari?) I bought from an Indian woman who had a collection of them in her home which I had custom fitted for a wedding I never attended. Patrick would bend over in the hotel room to put on his shoes and split the pants of his suit beyond repair. Of course it was a Saturday night and all the stores were closed and the only other pants he had with him were jeans. I vividly recall the sense of disappointment I felt because it would be the first and so far the last time I would have the opportunity to wear something so bejeweled.
The numerous jackets, jeans and sweaters I rushed to purchase for my first trip to the Netherlands six years ago trying to prove I was every bit as fashionable as those European women I had long since admired on the runways in Paris and Milan.
The Ann Taylor pedelled cream coloured sleeveless top that I saw in a magazine and searched endlessly for because I absolutely had to have it, to the boot cut jeans from White House | Black Market I was wearing the first time I meet Patrick in a country western bar appropriately named Gilley’s in Las Vegas. I couldn’t help but smile, remembering him asking me to film him riding the mechanical bull. The sense of excitement and mystery about this man with a cool accent who one day would become my husband. Then my mind began to fast forward to present day and I’m suddenly overwhelmed by this amazing adventure in a foreign land so different than anything I have ever known, finding a happiness and joy I never thought possible.
The Anthropology dress and Nine West heels I wore the following night, that stopped him dead in his tracks when he saw me through the crowd at the MGM. The butterflies in my stomach as I watched him approach, taking my breath away. That night we would walk for hours along the strip completely oblivious to the fact that I had on 5 inch stilettos, a feat that if I tried to duplicate today would render me in a wheelchair.
The coat I haggled over when I arrived in Hong Kong on the ferry from Macau after a weekend of adventure with a collegue. I recall searching for one that actually fit, and not being a small petit Asian woman I ended up with a XXL! I’m embarrassed to admit I have never worn it!
The shorts and t-shirt I bought at Ann Taylor Loft during a vacation in Florida that I wore the day I climbed the Great Wall on one of my many trips to China. How ackward I felt when passing Chinese tourists stopped me on my accent to have my picture taken with them. I think they must have thought I was someone famous, how disappointed they must have been when they got home and realized I was absolutely no one!
As I was sorting through all the clothes deciding what to keep and what to donate I realised that most of the clothes haven’t really been worn since. Not because they had gone out of style, they just didn’t fit the way they used to.
I looked at the vast amount of treasured memories that were laid out in the hallway of our home I couldn’t help but hope that whoever ended up with my memories would give them new life and that my treasures would create wonderful memories for them too.