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.

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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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