I’m a city kid, born and raised. To me, if you need something you just head over to the store and buy it. I do understand that this wasn’t always the case, but it is how I grew up.
I also grew up reading books based on Laura Ingles Wilder diaries. I loved those books, mostly because it was a life so different from my own. I couldn’t imagine making my own home, or rather helping someone make the home. I couldn’t fathom. It going to the store to get something and instead having the creativity to make what I needed out of what I had.
I may have mentioned before that Beloved isn’t all that handy with the tools, well pen and paper yes, but hammer and saws? No so much. I don’t mind this because again, he is a city kid and it isn’t as though we will ever be away from the city.
Still when he sent me a gift, a hand-made wooden spoon, carved from a single piece of wood, it took me back to when I was a young girl reading those books. I unwrapped the gift and marveled at the skill it took to make the spoon. Perhaps to some of you it isn’t a great deal of skill, but to me to see it made by hand without electrical tools and such, well just how lovely indeed. It was a work of art, at least to me. A piece of history even, hand-made when that skill was vanishing far too quickly.
There is a lot to say about progress and technology and sure saws and chisels, heck even rocks fashioned to a blade are all forms of technology. I guess though to me it spoke of a simpler time.
Simpler in how one spent one’s time because there wasn’t a great deal of free time. It also spoke to me of skills that have been lost by many of us, given over instead to machines.
When I phoned Beloved and thanked him for the gift, he told me that he had a chance to attempt to make some thing out of wood with the man who had made the spoon. After a period of time, the man told Beloved that maybe woodworking just wasn’t for him. Beloved told me there was no way he could do it. The truth is, I couldn’t do it either. How about you?