“The past is never dead, it is not even past.”

The morning is chilly, not cold, just chilly. The sun is out, but the sky does have a few clouds. I watched a spawn of Satan try to eat seeds from the feeders. It went from the long feeders to the suet feeders. My favorite was watching him on the roof of a suet feeder. He had trouble balancing and the feeder swayed from to side then he jumped off. He finally found one, but he had to eat upside down though he didn’t seem hindered. The feeder is empty. I’ll put in new seeds, but I’ll sprinkle them with cayenne.

Yesterday I was walking into my den when I realized I was in my favorite place at the perfect moment in time. The light was on, and it spread warmth throughout the room. The dog was stretched on the couch, and I could hear him deep breathing. I felt contented, and I smiled at my good fortune.

Life is really a quilt of moments sewn together without any thought to design, color or shape. The whiff of a familiar smell or the shape of a hand or the color of a shirt brings back a moment and connects us with an experience, never forgotten but seldom recalled. We hear a few notes from a long ago song, and, with a whoosh, the rest of the experience comes roaring into our memories and floods us with all the people and places forever connected to that song, memories we had shelved. The smell of a pie transports me to a small kitchen at 16 Washington Ave and the baking mitt on my mother’s hand. All of a sudden I’m remembering Thanksgiving and Christmas and cinnamon and sugar cookies, all triggered by the memory of my mother wearing that mitt and pulling a shelf from the oven.

One afternoon, walking home from school, I got so soaking wet even my shoes bubbled. When I got in the door, I shed the wet wear, went upstairs, got cozy and jumped into bed, book in hand. I nestled under the covers, turned on the bed lamp and began to read. As I was lying there, I felt warm and protected. Yesterday, it was the memory of that so long ago moment which gave me cause to smile. 

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6 Comments on ““The past is never dead, it is not even past.””

  1. Bob Cohen Says:

    The human mind is a wonderful gift of evolution. I don’t think that anaimals really remember or have a sense of past or future. I think they just live in the moment. I also have moments when I feel content with my life although they are rare.

    Which of our senses triggers memories best? Is the smell, or the sound, or the sight of a place trigger memories best? I once read that every time we recall a memory we change it in some way. We either add to it or modify the memory. Our brains are not like a hard drive or file cabinet where memories are stored in one place. However our mind works it suppressed the bad things and rembers the good things easily. I wonder what it would be like to remember everything that ever happened in your life? The actress Marilu Henner has that rare capability. Is it a gift or a curse?

    As I have gotten older people’s names seem to be difficult to recall, but the image of their faces remain strong. When my grandmother was in her 80s I remember that she would forget somethings that happened a couple of hours or even days in the past but she could recall something in great detail from her youth.

    Today is cloudy with temperatures in the low to mid 40s and breezy.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      I am contented. I have had so many moments well worth remembering. My dog knows me probably by smell, but he also knows the sound of my car as he never barks when I drive into the yard or come home. He remembers.

      Smell is supposed to be the biggest trigger of memories. I was at Plimoth Plantation for the first time when the aroma of the burning wood charcoal brought me back to Ghana. Every time I smell it, I zoom back.

      I can see my memories. I call the spot where they sit my memory drawers. Those memories don’t change except maybe they dim a little. I do remember some bad times, but those are fewer. I figure I’ve suppressed many of them.

      I do find myself working hard to remember names but they eventually show up though sometimes long after I wanted them.

      The sun is gone now.

  2. olof1 Says:

    Sunny and chilly start here but it turned to cloudy and cold, winter is closing in I’m afraid.

    I can occasionally jump back in time when I smell something and sometimes music can do the same but it is rare and I can truthfully say that no smell of cookies or buns will ever make me remember my mother 🙂 🙂 If anyone it will be my mormor 🙂

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      It is a chilly night but about right for this time of year. I know cold weather is on the way next week. It will get down to the 20’s. My sister just had that weather in Colorado.

      My sisters and I cook family recipes on the holidays so the kitchen smells bring me back to home and my mother. I love those memories.

      Have a great day!

  3. Hedley Says:

    Golly gosh what a day..England beat Croatia to win their group in the UEFA Nations League and progress to the Final Four in Portugal in June AND THE Detroit Lions beat the Panthers who went for two and didn’t get it

    I battled through my amazon fraud, stood on pavement for 6 hours yesterday for Mrs MDHs annual turkey giveaway and it hasn’t snowed much

    All is good with the world

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      I’m so glad England has done so well and the Lions as well. It was a wonderful weekend for you while I, on the other hand, had no games to watch. The Pats had a by.

      I have to go upstairs and check what I have bought for whom so I’ll know where I am for Christmas. I want to shop next week and finish if I can.

      My world too is good.


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