This is a blog about a candle. Sort of. And with many digressions. And not a lot of point.
I frequently blink and find myself, just for a fraction of second, somewhere in my memory. Of course, it lingers on as I get back to present day life and makes me wonder, "why there?"
Yesterday, it was standing at the door of a storage room in the building where my first grade class was held at Easthaven, looking into the room filled with boxes and boxes of candles. This room was the one with the windows looking out on the small playground area where the first graders romped, before the big gym was built. In the center of the playground was a big pole, perhaps that once had a tether ball attached, but now was there solely for climbing. I've had a moment of flashback at the top looking down on the playground, too.
But back to the candles.
These are what I now call, at least in my head, Catholic candles, mainly because the only time I ever see them for sale anymore is in that little section in the grocery store, right near the tortillas, with images of the Virgin Mary and Christ on the cross.
Easthaven BAPTIST school, however, had a fundraiser with these candles that were devoid of any iconography. But they were the same shape, cylindrical, and exactly the same size as a tennis ball can, made of a thick glass. They were not scented.
So there I stood, yesterday and in 1976 at the same time, at the door to the room with the boxes upon boxes of candles that had to be sorted and given to the children to deliver.
And then, of course, being me, I had to find out if I had a picture of one. They lasted forever because I don't think my mom remembered to burn them very often. Mostly they sat as decorations on bookshelves except at the holidays. Surely somewhere in the background, I could spot it again.
In the piles of scanned Christmas slides, there it was.
This picture was taken at Christmas 1984 and, sure enough, there's one of the candles, with the prancing deer in the forest. I hadn't attended Easthaven in three years and we hadn't sold candles since the late 70s, so this thing had been a fixture on the shelves for years. But I'd completely forgotten about it until that brief second yesterday.
Then, studying the picture, all sorts of objects take on memories. There's my first SLR camera, with the only camera strap I've ever used. It looks far less bright and clean now, but that hippy looking thing holds my current digital SLR to this day. There's the Thompson Chain Reference King James Bible (with blue bow and bible cover) that was a gift that year, bought at the Baptist bookstore over by the Toys-r-Us that had all those cool little toy prizes Mom and Dad would buy for children's church. The bible had my name in script on the dark blue leather cover.
I see the old Sign Language book I would pour over, trying to decipher the static images with arrows into active, recognizable signs. (Never worked, 2D graphics are Greek to me.)
Peeking over the top of the piano are the recital busts of Mozart and Bach. I had Schumann and Brahms, too. But only Mozart was gold. My piano teacher must have had a rush of craftiness one year before the big recital.
I still have that horse blanket, although it's seen much better days.
And the paneled walls and rust colored couch (which I now note my dress seems to have been made out of) was a giant sectional thing that ate up the entire living room.
Whenever I dream, I'm very often back in this house. But these details are lost in the fuzziness. So it was a pleasant respite from an overwhelming day yesterday to return to being 6, and 14, and back "home" for just a moment, even if I don't understand why.