As always, I began my day by reading Ronni Bennett's excellent blog, As Time Goes By and, as always, she set me a-thinking as she described and shared some of those weird things that we all have that always seem to survive a move.
I am sitting here kicking myself because I had something of that ilk myself and I didn't keep it when I moved in April.
On my 18th birthday in April of 1965, my mother gave me a small, grayish green plastic General Electric clock radio. I had just received notification of my scholarship to Kent State University and she thought it would be something nice for my dorm room to wake me in time for class. I was surprised because our budget was so tight and we hadn't very much money as my parents had just divorced and my dad was pretty lax about child support as was the court system in enforcing it. I worked part-time at a local department store and babysat regularly to save every penny I could to pay my college expenses and help my sister and brother as well so this gift was special as my mom wasn't given to telling us she was proud of us. The clock radio said it for her.
That clock went away to Kent with me & woke me for the two years I spent on main campus & came home with me as I transferred to the local Kent branch as full-time student & went to work as a secretary full-time. A year of this took its toll, emotionally and physically, and I dropped out of college and just worked.
I got engaged and moved to New York and played at working there and my clock radio was there. I broke my engagement and ran away home and went to work at Ohio Bell where I spent the next five years on an erratic schedule that precluded my taking classes but my clock radio was there getting me out of bed and to work on time .
The clock radio followed me to my first apartment and subsequent ones, waking me faithfully so I could be where I needed to be. When I married in 1972, my clock radio woke my husband and I daily despite his telling me for years to buy a new one . Being the frugal sort, I kept telling him that it worked & I saw no reason to replace it. Finally, I did buy a fancy replacement for him -- it had AM and FM and all sorts of nice features that I thought unnecessary so I kept using my faithful little GE to awaken my children and I as we kept to their busy schedule.
Many years later when I left my marriage, my clock radio came with me -- still waking me daily as I soldiered through the trauma of re-building my life.
My clock radio died last year just before Christmas -- it just stopped working. I was heartbroken and swore I wouldn't get rid of it, no matter what. I went online and looked up GE on the web and went to their customer service center to tell them about my faithful friend's recent demise and its incredible longevity. In return I got a tacky note telling me that I could check their website to find a replacement.
A replacement? Yeah, I bought a new clock radio but nothing will ever replace that dear little clock radio that was with me though thick and thin. I miss it.
Unfortunately, when I moved in April, my clock radio went the way of all flesh in my unplanned and hasty move. I wish I had it. If nothing else, it was a nice conversation piece and it reminded me that, yes, there was a time when my mother loved me and was proud of me.
Copyright 2006 Kay Dennison