Pebbles in a jar

I have a jar sitting on the shelf above my desk. It’s about 8-9 inches tall and unremarkable in every way. Inside it, climbing to about half the height of the jar are about two dozen colourful pebbles. Most of them are round and soft, tempered by time in water and washed up on beaches around the world for me to find. A few come from mountains and highlands and they’ve kept the jagged edges left by the separation from whence they came. Knossos on Crete, Rome Italy, Land’s End England, the Tunesian part of the Sahara Desert, the Mandraki harbour on Rhodes, Meteora in Greece… the beach 10 minutes from my house where I go kayaking in the summer… and so on.

I have no idea why I keep these pebbles. But each is collected with the kind of care that suggests some greater purpose than simply filling a jar on a shelf with nature’s own version of calling cards. They are mementos, though… but randomly picked by fancy rather than meticulous planning. Perhaps it is the idea of having something lasting from fleeting times and visits that appeals to me!?

It’s an illusion, of course. Time doesn’t stop just because we attempt to preserve it. Women filling themselves with botox and silicone still age, even if their increasingly surgically inspired look of shock and surprise does everything it can to hide that fact…. and pebbles in a jar can’t take me back.

Still, I like the jar… and I know I will keep picking up pebbles here and there. Eventually, I might even figure out what to do with them.

Pebbles in a jar

4 thoughts on “Pebbles in a jar

  1. Scattered Rayn says:

    It is work in progress and an ever fluid process. I don’t think anyone will ever have that skill down to perfection, and I don’t think we’re meant to anyway. For me living in the here and now and enjoying life isn’t about setting everything up perfectly and then sitting back to enjoy it without a care or worry in the world. It’s about making the most of what you have to work with, and about finding the good and the valueable and enjoyable in every day no matter how you may feel treated by life.

    I feel like I am repeating myself – sorry! – but for me it really is all about perspective. If I look at my life and think it sucks, chances are it WILL. But if I can find, make and create small moments of happiness… if I can MAKE myself see good things, good intentions, lucky breaks and beautiful moments… then – in my experience – life is far more pleasant and interesting place to be.

  2. Scattered Rayn says:

    Thanks for another interesting comment! I hadn’t quite thought of it the way to describe the connection between the Way of Words and this post, but I can certainly see your point!

    My first instinct was to balk and refuse any such notion, and yet as I thought about it, I think maybe there IS something to what you said.

    In the past 10 years I have uprooted my life completely from its existing foundation and started anew. It wasn’t so much a matter of wanting something new as a general sense of discontent with what was there. I needed more and I needed it “different”.

    I couldn’t ever have imagined what it is like to strip one’s life back to the bare minimum and have to start again, even to the point of having to learn the simplest things all over. But in the process of doing so – several times – I have come to appreciate those few enduring things that have followed me from one life to the next, so to speak.

    In that sense I suppose you can say that like the pebbles in this post those few elements that carry through are handpicked, proven to last and willing to remain. Am I afraid to let go? Sure, I think we all are reluctant to give up that which we rely on to some extent. But on the other hand… I know what “lies on the other side” of letting go… I’ve been there enough times to know that I can deal with it. So, I don’t worry about it too much. Instead, I just like to cherish what I have here and now.. who knows how long I get to keep it 🙂

    So, yes… indeed… words do reveal us. Both those we speak and those we hear. That is why sometimes we find ourselves in what others have written, I think.

    And perhaps this most of all is what I love about words. Their ability to encompass us all – one way or another.

  3. I read your post on words and then reading this one on pebbles gives an objective looker ,the idea and ways people try to hold onto things,memories and so on.
    Usually such people have a difficulty to let go.
    I understand this well,because I am one of those 😦
    My own writings reveal to me,this trait of mine which I though I didn’t have !
    Writing does such things to us… doesn’t it ?
    i.e give insights to us (apart from the readers) about ourselves 🙂

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