The Great Divesting

Living conscionably has to start right now.  It’s nice to imagine a future life off-grid without flush toilets, and wearing the homespun wool of ethically raised squirrels, but generating mountains of garbage and emissions on the way from here to there is not ok.

Although I’m still mostly flat, especially since my physio got too ambitious and set me back a week, I’ve been planning, listing, and mapping the next few weeks, aka The Great Divesting.  There’s a could-be-considered-gargantuan amount of sorting to be done, with some areas of the house gnarlier than others (basement!).  I think I’m going to tone down the scariness of it by getting a storage space temporarily.  Then the micro-sorting of stuff like papers and fabrics can be delayed until our time of homelessness.  Who wants to be sifting tax-deductible receipts when there’s a whole house to get thru yet?

Today I started on the library, and sorted all my books into towering stacks marked “Unread, Irreplaceable, ?, and To Go”.  The number of books I haven’t read is shocking.  At least six Carol Shields books in there, and the stack is almost as large as the largest- “Irreplaceable”.  I’ve been collecting actively since I owned a home to keep them in, and it shows.  I in no way regret this accumulation, even though it’s inconvenient when you have to transport them.

A favorite quote (paraphrased!) from Salman Rushdie: “Well, once you pack up all the books you own, move them 100s of miles, and then unpack them, that’s where you ‘live’”.

The “?” stack is a poser.  This is the “Do I keep, give to certain people, sell … how much do I even like this book?” stack.   Every undecided book went in there with a little growl, bc I know it’s just a front for “Will have to sort AGAIN later”.

Once the books were done, the shelves were still piled with “Stuff”.  Dusty cds, half-filled notebooks, loose photos and maybe-useful business cards- the kind of detritus you don’t have a good place for so you stick it between books or in little decorative boxes, to stay hidden until you move.  The “Stuff” gets faced tomorrow.

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