In this year’s July issue, National Geographic ran a story about the Bowerbirds of New Guinea and Australia. The male birds of this species have several interesting and unique habits. The birds build a hut-like structure to woo and and impress potential mates. They also collect and decorate the areas around their bowers with a wide variety of items. Each bird seems to have an individual preference. Some collect dead beatles, mushrooms, rocks; some bright flower petals and certain types of leaves; and others choose man’s trash for their treasure piles. I think it a pretty interesting habit; they even organize their collections according to like items.
All of us have some sort of collection. Some of us tend more towards hoarding, and others edit judiciously. I know folks who fall within each category. I think I fall somewhere near the middle. We have been going through Scott’s Mother’s things. We have edited, purged, and incorporated into our own bower.
This little cabinet is an antique that several generations back used to house medicines for the household. In our modern life, it is located in the Master bedroom where it sits atop a dresser and accomodates small sentimental collections from both sides of Scott’s family. Granny, Scott’s very dear and wonderful grandmother, had a beautiful guest room decorated with violet adorned accent pieces. As she got older and moved into smaller quarters, she down-sized and shared some pieces with us. Later, Scott’s Mother did the same with some of her collections. Each item has its own story, and a large part its value is the story. On this day I tucked in a little bit of me. My pencil drawing of the ballet slippers seems to be made for the space.
Prints of this drawing are available on my etsy website –
I am glad that in one way we are unlike the Bowerbirds. They build the bowers and heap up the collections only to leave them behind once they win their partner. I love that we pass on the history and add to it.