Collect Memories, Not Dust

fourth year lauren linkowski

by farah hammady

by farah hammady

My house is odd. It’s the only occupied residence amidst a street of abandoned ones, it has two chimneys, my bedroom is red and the living room is an ombré assortment of blues and greens. Nevertheless, it’s already feeling like home.

When my parents redid their house last year, they kept every piece of furniture that I could potentially use for my own Athens home. My favorite of the various pieces is a floral couch purchased in 1993 when they moved in together.

They decorated my entire childhood living room around this couch. Salmon curtains, green winged chairs - even the piano was chosen based on what would or wouldn’t clash with the couch.

I spent full days on that couch, binge reading the entire Harry Potter series. My brothers and I would fight to sleep on it for a night  after returning from long days away from home. Needless to say, the couch was a staple in our house— in its horrendous 90s glory kind of way.

To my roommates, free furniture was good furniture, and the couch now rests in the 50 shades of blue room— a fitting home for its misfit self along with all its darkly stained wood and leather friends.

Though it’s an inanimate object, this worn in, ragingly floral couch has become a source of comfort even 10 hours away from my childhood home in PA. It’s funny to think that this item has gone from being a respite from sick days home from elementary school and sleepless nights figuring out how to best write my common app essay, to a place where my friends kick their feet up during wine nights.

This new phase, this college phase, has given the couch a new life. It’s now the center of attention at parties and the site of 3 am cramming for anatomy practicals. As much as it makes me laugh with its flowered pattern and ripped seams, it does remind me to call the people I share these vivid memories with, and let them in on the new parts of my life. Taking it in to our odd, little Athens house gave the couch the opportunity for one last round of collecting memories, fully avoiding another year of collecting dust in a vintage shop.