Time Stand Still

Yesterday was a good day. A short day-trip to a scenic and nostalgic little town was a refreshing and memory created.  Any time you have an opportunity to enjoy a of nature and eclectic people, you will often walk away with a new outlook on your own personal life.  The part that nature plays in self-reflection is, and has always been, quite understandable.  Historically proven, humans communing with nature will give a sense of beauty, peace, and an inward calm.  Standing next to a river with the trees rustling under the direction of the wind.  Sunlight glittering through the fall foliage, dancing off the moving waters. The gentle sounds of birds calling to one another. The autumn colors filling the visual senses with awe and wonderment.  Tranquility settles in and the callousness of the week begins to fade into a warming of rejuvenation.

Enter people.  This little town that I visited is not only a historic town nestled next to the river, but has become a mecca of antique shops, art studios, themed bars and restaurants, and unique shops.  Add to this the problem of ‘one way in, one way out’ through town, and you have the makings of absolute calamity.  Cars and motorcycles lined up as far as the eyes can see to the north and to the south.  Impatient drivers darting through freshly turned red lights in hopes of further advancing their position.  Pedestrians milling on sidewalks, blocking everything and everyone.  Now, let’s add to this congestion of people and vehicles with a festival!  Sure, it’s time for a celebration of the fall harvest, so let’s figure out a way to bring more people into an already cramped area!

I will admit, that I have always been a fan of people watching. I attend the Minnesota State Fair every year for two things: Pronto Pups and people!  Let’s face it, the displays are the same, the food is the same, the rides are the same, and the animals all seem the same to me. (Disclaimer: Yes, I know that they are different! Settle down)!  I go to that fair for my favorite food on a stick and to see the masses that gather.  You can learn a great deal about society and who we are by watching large groups of people who gather together at events such as this.  You have representatives from every race, creed, and status.  They all come with one mind, to have fun!

Now, on my trip there was a smaller, but just as significant gathering of people from all walks of life.  But on this particular day I wasn’t enlightened about some of life’s curiosities by the people around me.  It was from a visit to an antique store at the edge of town.  This particular store was different from many of the other stores simply because it was housed within an old building that had stood on that spot since the early settlers came in.  The multi-level building still contained the wood that framed the structure, formed the floors, and some of the stonework that created walls separating rooms.  An old building containing antiquities.  Fitting!

I have been in many antique stores before this visit, but on this day was when observation gave way to realization.  Wandering through the many aisles and nooks, glancing at the various knickknacks, furniture, clothing, oddities, and memorabilia,  things started to  scream at me in volumes.  “I remember that.”  “I had one of those.” “It seems like yesterday that I was using that very same thing.”

Really? The very objects that have been relegated to an antique store are the very things that I used, played with, and owned!  Is this some cosmic joke? Is there some message being sent to me from the universe? Are you trying to tell me something?  Now, hold on one minute here!  I’m NOT that old!  Someone get me a dictionary and the Universal Antiquities Law book…..I have some research to do!

First off, I had better make sure I understand the definition of the word:

1.  of or belonging to the past; not modern; outdated

2.  dating from a period long ago: antique furniture.

3.  in the tradition, fashion, or style of an earlier period; old-fashioned; antiquated.
Well, that seems pretty generic to me.  After all, you buy a cell phone now days and within a few months it is ‘outdated’.  But, you won’t find your ‘old’ smart phone sitting on a shelf in the antique store.  I’ll check with my highly classified, you-will-never-find-it, enigma book: Universal Antiquities Law.   According to section 3, paragraph 2.5, sub-paragraph 15, it clearly states that ‘items cannot be displayed as antiques or historical pieces, until such a time as this author has determined, so as not to make said author feel aged or become worrisome with self-reflection…”, etc, etc, etc….  Seems pretty clear to me that this was not consulted prior to putting out some of the items.  I could go on about the very specific details listed in the Book, but I won’t bore you with all the legalisms.  Let’s just say that there has been a coordinated violation of my self-directed rights as a citizen!
Be this as it may, I know that there are many who are “more experienced” in years that myself.  I find myself in a mix of older and younger folks around me everyday.  It’s just when you get to that point in your life when realizations begin to settle in.  When you can sit in a bar and see people ordering a drink that look like they are barely 15, yet are legal to drink.  When newscasters come on the television and you wonder if they just left high school.  You find yourself bringing up a reference to a television show from years past and the people around you look puzzled because they weren’t born yet.  I’m sure that many of you have experienced these moments, and many others.  That is when you chuckle with them, but walk away thinking to yourself: where has the time gone?
If you want to take a trip down memory lane, you might find that it isn’t too far from you.  It might be something as simple as a visit to your local antique store.  But, before you do, prepare yourself for some reality.  Some may find the reality is harsh and startling, some might find it to be a pleasant experience.  Whatever your reality is when taking that trip into the past, just remember that your past has brought you to this present.  Times may have changed, but we were the forgers of that change. We took the rotary telephone and turned it into the cellular. We took the phonograph and turned it into the MP3. And, we fortunately discarded the leisure suits!
Time moves forward and events and items slip into the past.  Reflect, remember, and smile!  Someday soon, that smart phone in your pocket is going to stir memories in your grandchildren when they visit the antique store!

Published by

Harbor Lights Ministries

I was once a happy-go-lucky, naive, and simple lad, content within the confines of the world. God saw fit to shake me out of my tree and gave me a new life! Thank God for the Bible! Learning every day and preaching to myself on a regular basis! Podcast can be found anywhere under "Things I Preach To Myself About".

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