i bought a desk for my son off of craig's list. he has my childhood bed (which, incidentally, was a bunk bed when i was little - i slept on the bottom, but he's using it as a single). he loves that bed and didn't want to switch to a new one, so i thought he ought to have my childhood desk to go with it. but of all the things we've saved (and by we, i mean my mother - who i appreciate enormously for many reasons, her instinct for saving things is only one of them) over the years, that desk was long gone. so naturally, i spent months searching to buy it on craig's list. i finally found one a few weeks back, and my son and i went rushing out in a rainstorm to get it.
that was two weeks ago, but it was two days before we left for utah and there's a giant pile of baseball cards on the floor of my son’s room, so the desk is still in the living room.
at first i didn't like that at all, given how i like it when things are in their place. but it is my childhood desk. (did i mention that the desk has two locking drawers? and that the posting on craig's list mentioned that the owners didn't have the key? but here's the thing. i still had the key. in my jewelry box, all these years later, i still had the key to those two locking drawers.) so i began to enjoy the desk there in the middle of the living room. it takes me back, you know?
and then it was thanksgiving and i needed a place to put the wine and the water, and there was the desk in the middle of the living room. it was perfect. my mother had this old lovely yellow linen tablecloth - with a hole in it, but it was my great-grandmother's. and perfect.
my son came home from school and said, "my desk is not a cocktail table." i know.
but now it's a hanukkah table.
we moved the desk in front of the dining room windows and filled it up with menorahs and dreidels, not-silver trays, bags of gelt and dishes of candles. (and the lighter, which is essential when you celebrate hanukkah with five menorahs. that's a lot of candles to melt into their candle holders each night.) it's all sparkly in that corner, especially in front of those windows in the dark. and now i think i need to start searching craig's list for a cocktail table for the living room.