Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Chestnut

When I was about 16 I liked to get into mischief with my friend Mary. The mischief was always of a harmless nature. We liked to sneak onto the golf course for a swim, in what we later learned was non-potable water. Or jump into hotel pools and other such Tom Foolery. One such night ended with a new companion for myself, Chestnut. No I did not steal Chestnut from anybody's yard---and that's all  I am going to say on the matter.

chestnut 2

Anyway, Chestnut the pink lawn flamingo had no legs. Initially I tried to fashion some legs for my flamingo, but all of my attempts were disappointing. Somehow along the way I became a bit obsessed with this legless flamingo. Chestnut found his way onto (not into, ONTO) my backpack. I had one of those backpacks with an unnecessary bungee cord on the back so I used that to secure Chestnut. I would walk proudly through my high school with Chestnut on my back. If you want an explanation for this I am sorry to disappoint, but I don't have one. I did this for a couple of years and then I stopped carrying a backpack when I went to college.

chestnut1

Chestnut found his way into my room and there he stayed. I moved to a new state and he moved with me, one of my few possessions at the time. Several times I thought I should get rid of that pink flamingo, but I couldn't. For the longest time I couldn't even tell you why I was unable to part with him; I just had to keep him. Eventually I came to think of Chestnut as something of a personal mascot...but now I realize that he is even more than that to me. Chestnut serves to be something of a reminder of the person that I really am. I may have found myself in this life, with this family, with these responsibilities. I may start to take myself seriously as a mother, artist, art historian, professor----but then I spot Chestnut and I remember that I am still the girl that wants  to get into mischief and is happiest being a little odd.

6 comments:

Susan Struck said...

...and we all loved that girl as well!

wyowolfpack said...

I think it's the Chestnut in you that I like the best!

glutenfreehappytummy.com said...

love the eyelashes:) haha

Stacy said...

I like you a little odd. :-)

Kate said...

I'm not sure what, if anything, this means, but my daughter has one exactly life this. Her 1st birthday was "Alice in Wonderland Plays Croquet with a Flamingo" (Yes, I'm serious). We decorated with plastic flamingoes, but only one caught E's fancy, and it was the ONE shipped sans legs. It's the only plastic toy that makes the cut every month and the only toy she will consistently chuckle at when left to her own devices.

Bliss Doubt said...

There's something about those flamingos. My uncle was the world's greatest gardener, who continuously renewed his creation of his fruit and flower paradise. In the family consensus, his only show of bad taste was the mid-century pink flamingos that always stood in front of the brick planter under his front picture window. Years later after everyone died, I ended up being the one to settle the estate and sell the house. I couldn't part with those flamingos. I was planning to take them to my apartment, but the buyers of the house really wanted them. I left them, I believed, in a good home.

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