The sign said, “Please leave something of significance. “ What a novel request to make for what I thought was, for sure, was made by the padre of our local church. I know they are struggling to keep the modest church from financial disaster and perhaps this is a request for some sort of ecclesiastical garage sale. I was hard pressed to decide what significant item I might leave for the sale.
Back home I looked on my bookshelves trying to decide what might be appropriate. There is a little carved rabbit I bought it from a Hanoi street vendor years ago. At the time I had hoped it was not made out of ivory, perhaps animal bone, but it is a dear little thing significant to me because I was born in the year of the rabbit.
The next item is a circular bone box filled with sand and eggshells from a young woman who gifted me the treasure. Inside the box are the egg remains of the now extinct Malagasy elephant bird. That for sure ought to fetch a good price from the right person who knows its value.
Propped up against a bookend is an Incan figure, from the shoulders up. I am a bit ashamed to say that I dug it up in 1963 from a graveyard, located in an isolated desert valley in Peru. At the time it seemed innocent enough but I suspect that I would not do that again, out of respect to the departed.
I hold dear my small green rhino carved out of malachite which I purchased from a sidewalk vendor in Chile, but another might think that it was just a plastic animal.
On my mantel is a Tibetan prayer wheel which I can easily spin around and around. Inside there are dozens of prayers written on thin yellow paper and I suppose giving it several twirls make for a quick succession of blessings and acknowledgements to Buddha. Helps to cover as many bases as one can I’d say.
Looking over my collection I opened a small brown box. Inside nests a Zuni fetish, a brown bear inlaid with a turquoise cloud and raindrops, signifying safe journeys for its owner. This is it! I shall take it over to the church tomorrow and leave it for the sale. Safe journey, sweet bear.