Friday, October 30, 2009

Memory isn't what it used to be.

Lately, I have discovered that my Hot Wheels Packard 1934 is missing. I am not sure if my cleaning lady had anything to do with it (I must have left it on the table in the dining room) but the end result is this: I am unable to find a dear childhood souvenir which initially I loathed.
The car in question is a reminder of a specific Christmas where we went to ABC mall in Dbayeh and I bought a series of 6 collection cars from Hot Wheels - originally I wanted the 6 cars related to the city (Shiny, colourful, etc...) but my mother thought otherwise. And eventually, she added a 7th car, the famous Packard in question which was being sold seperately.
Whereas originally I disliked my present, with time and age, I have come to understand my mother's choice and the whole thing is now a very dear souvenir. So when I discovered the car missing, I relied on my memory to reconstruct the hours upon hours being spent playing with that set on the carpet of our living room (Which had squares in it, I could easily pretend they were roads).
What does this have to do with anything?
Well, today I found the Packard being sold on ebay. I could purchase it whenever I want. Somehow, the whole magic of it vanished. Knowing how accessible it is somehow made the souvenir a little worthless. In that perspective, I quote from Antoine de St. Exupery's The little prince: "When I was a little boy I lived in an old house, and there was a legend that a treasure was buried in it somewhere. Of course, no one was ever able to find the treasure, perhaps no one even searched. But it cast a spell over the whole house. My house hid a secret in the depths of its heart... "
It was the "secret at the depths of its heart" that unfound treasure that made the house so special.
Also through the internet today, I found North Star trainers. Objects which I thought that were only present in our childhood albums of photos. Suddenly, again, knowing they can be purchased from someone over the net, made the special remembrance I had sort of tarnished (Does anyone but me remember the huge North Star advertising in what now is the building next to Forum to Beirut? It was a beautiful shot of a young man lying down on his back - one can figure out that he is topless - but the whole photo is taken from the front angle (With the camera placed at the level of the feet) and in the foreground are his crossed legs as he wears his North Star runners and his jeans). With now everything within the grasp of our hands over the internet, with every personal remembrance recreated and found so easily, I feel that memory is starting to become disposible.
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