Wednesday 6 August 2014

Embarras de richesse

Dau.II was back home on a flying weekend visit between work shifts and at tea-time on the Sunday she announced that we should clear out the attic over the red shed, because she's about to move house and needs some china plates. This had an element of déjà-vu because I did exactly the same thing back in April.  I didn't find much china but I did rescue 8 boxes of books which had been sitting in an attic which alternates between damp and broiling under the direct Summer sun and dripping icy cold in a Winter storm. That's a tribute to the printed book as a medium. None of my optical / electronic information has survived that long: the CDs, DVDs, magnetic tapes, floppy and 'stiffy' discs of the same vintage are all unreadable either because the medium is corrupted or because the machines to read it are long dead.  Print is better than that, indeed, because these books have only been under my cavalier 'care' for 16 years but many of them were printed more than 60 years ago when there were only 12 computers on the planet and they were about the size of the shed. My shame was great about how I had allowed these books to get close to the edge of oblivion rather than putting them back into circulation to be read by someone else. I don't own any crap books - they are all of some value; if rarely of financial value.

I was dismayed when under Dau.II's enterprise, we brought every golldarn box out of the attic and filled the yard with a small, and totally disregarded, section of our possessions.  It was like the contrast between the amount of food consumed weekly by a German family compared to that of a family from, say, Chad.  What are we like?  We have boxes of china which haven't seen the light of day since Dau.II was in diapers: dinky tea-sets ideal for teeny girls to host a dolls' tea-party with apple-juice and teeny-tiny sandwiches.  Ho-hum, I guess we've saved them for the next generation down.  I did, however, find the catering tea-pot which I had looked for every one of the 7 years when the girls hosted a summer camp for a couple of dozen of their friends. I'll have to invite a party of neighbourly crumblies to get that into use.  On the other hand, I did unearth an electric kettle vintage late 1980s which appeared to be in working order except that it leaks where the spout is brazed onto the body of the kettle.  It should / could have been throw on the dump years ago but now it can get a new lease of life when I patch up the joints with Sugru !! It needed materials science to make the break-through for that solution to emerge.

And red face, I found another six boxes of books!  I know where some of them can go.

1 comment:

  1. Blessings to you and dau II. I cud have provided two pair of 11yr old hands to willingly assist had we but known. Still talking about the attic long after feeding sheep has passed