Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Souvenir. . .

Billy Joel performed this song as the final song for his concert in New York in 1982.  I've probably written more blog posts about him (even more than Michael Jackson) and it might even be somewhat trippy to meet him one day and tell him how much his music has meant to me.

Are you like me when you go to events or just places in general and you collect souvenirs?
Little mementos of something small, most of the time they're things that people would normally not take a second glance or not remember.  It's almost like I play a little game with myself, if it isn't taking pictures with my eyes (I pretend my eyes are camera lenses and I blink really hard like I'm taking photos with my eyes, something I did a lot in my childhood and still do ha!).

A picture postcard
A folded stub
A program of the play
File away your photographs
Of your holiday

Like clockwork at the beginning of each year, I tend to do a big cleanup of my study / workspace (I was going to say spring cleaning, but it's summer in Aotearoa, so it wouldn't make sense) and throw away the souvenirs that I've collected over the years.  I've started taking down photographs that once held pride and place, put away the picture postcards into drawers, found not only programmes of plays but also wedding and funeral programmes.  My recent holiday photographs however, remain housed in my mind,  I realised there are some images that I don't want to share, that I want to keep private to me and my thoughts - not because I don't want to share them, but I am starting to realise that there are some things that I would like to keep sacred to me, and besides, images can't explain the experience of being there.  I can't find the words to articulate the emotions and thoughts I had while being in Samoa over the Christmas break.  So those souvenirs I will keep with me forever.

And your mementos
Will turn to dust
But that's the price you pay
For every year's a souvenir
That slowly fades away
Every year's a souvenir
That slowly fades away. . . 

I hope that you keep your memories that are worth remembering as close to you as possible.
I do start to see each year as a souvenir.  The older you get, the more you start to see each year like a souvenir, taking into account milestones that mark each year, and those milestones colour your perception of whether the year was a good one or a bad one.

I hope that my memory will stay with me forever.
My sense of recall has always been particularly strong, something I inherited from my father who is a prolific orator and can readily recite honorific addresses of all the titles for all of the villages in Samoa.  He sings all the Samoan hymns when you quote the hymn number and he can sing the first line of each hymn.  My father will be a huge help to me when I eventually get around to notating the hymnbook that I plan to write.  It will be a hymnbook of all of the old Samoan tunes that he would have grown up singing in his village of Fasitoouta in Samoa.  My hope is that, at least when I'm gone, I will leave some souvenirs behind for people to enjoy. . .