Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Saturday

July 20, 2013

Mardi Link: Shoebox unleashes tactile memories


The sensation of the boys’ younger selves was so real, that even down in my damp basement I felt the warmth

of a long ago sun, smelled the pine woods all around, and heard the echoes of their young voices as they explored the forest.


My Grandma Link, who died a decade ago, used to love to say, “Where did the time go?” as if she were looking for a missing sweater. I don’t know about all of time, but I sure would like to know where that one single moment went. Where exactly is that moment on the trail at the Sand Lakes Quiet Area? While I’m at it, I’d also like to know where those four people, that young mother and her three little boys, got themselves to. They feel so real, like I could reach out and put my hand on their shoulders.


I think the truth is that time is a lot like my disorganized shoebox. The one full of photographs. It is jumbled, random, pine-scented, and magical. And wholly impossible for me, you, or any human being to organize.


But don’t let that stop you. Go ahead and dig down through it, anytime you like.



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