I feel so darn young today! Must be that I was working/playing on my latest “memory map” from 1967. I picked that age, 17, because my son Andy is 17 and I thought it would give me additional needed insight into what his world is like. Well, of course his world today is rather different, but there are definitely some similarities on the level of inner experience.
Here’s what I wrote about the process in an earlier blog posting:
The maps we hold in our mind are metaphoric, like story boards rather than the kind of maps you buy at the gas station. The distances are distorted, many landmarks are left out all together. Each location has an emotional charge, a sensory load. So when we revisit our internal maps, all these stored impressions start popping and sizzling, like a fireworks display. We get charged up and “wised up” about our experience when we make art of it, and memory maps are one way to do that.
The Tuesday Muses joined me in this memory quest and as we shared our colorful results we had the added benefit of finding out more about each other. Some of us did memory maps of childhood home neighborhoods, and others did something more like experience “quilts”, as for instance mine.
It isn’t that I came up with any “new” memories of that time, but I was left with the sensation that I was/am walking in two worlds simultaneously – the present and that year of high school junior self-hood. It’s a lot like when you wake up from a dream that’s particularly poignant and it feels almost more real than your waking state.
Joseph Campbell said, “What did you do as a child that created timelessness, that made you forget time? There lies the myth to live by.”
And Graham Greene, “There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.”
It’s very poignant to be living in what was the future back then in 1967, simultaneous with reliving the moments when that door to the future opened up!
So if you want to see it close up, here it is in two pages:
Favorite colors for decorating my room – hot pink and yellow/orange! My father owned a Chicken Delight, fast food and delivery restaurant where I worked throughout high school. Otherwise there was high school, my sweet dog Duffy, mad crushes, lots of cheap burgers and my leanings toward hippy-dom. (I’ll spare you those details.) Is that really me with the book? Did I really look like that? Yup. Me and everyone else.