In the distance she can see the small wooden box being pushed by the motion of each wave. Moving closer to the sandy beach, but feeling as if time has stood still. Climbing up the sand dune, Whitney can see in the distance a series of boxes, five in total, spaced enough that by the time she has collected the first, the next should be coming within range. Accepting that these are not being delivered by post to her doorstep, her anticipation growing as she contemplates the contents, she sits down and waits.
Rushing to open the first box, a package not much larger than a lunch bag, Whitney reveals a journal and pen [this counts as a single object in my world!]. Worn, brown leather. The pages rough and uncut mismatched lengths, a simple felt tip marker in a warm shade of purple held on by the ties that keep the entire package together. Always wanting to find the time to sit down and write about anything, everything; now the perfect opportunity had presented itself. So under a tree she sits, pen in hand writing about the anxious feelings of waiting for the next box to wash ashore.
This next item floating towards her, a wooden box that seems to have been designed to float under even the most drastic of weather conditions. Food? Maybe something that needed to be kept from the salt water? Carefully removing the plastic covering, exposing a waxy shipping box, its contents secured inside by yet another layer of plastic. A sherpa covered fleece blanket to keep her warm at all times. Cream colored ringlets of material sown onto a blue fleece backing. An object she would have used during the coldest of nights or even for warmth on the nicest of days.
A transistor radio to keep her company during those times when she needed to hear the voice of someone else. The ability to listen to any type of music she felt would help lighten her mood. Her sense of isolation lifted by memories of things she had done or people she had been surrounded by. A cacophony of show tunes, classical music, modern rock, and every once in a while a comedy show to lighten the mornings.
As this fourth box starts to make its way within Whitney’s grasp, the question in her mind “Why hasn’t this person sent me any food?” taking over. This time around it requires a little more effort getting this box ashore. Having dug it ways partially into the break of the ocean, tiny waves lapping at her feet; this box weighing considerably more than any other. Determined to just empty it rather than exhaust herself, Whitney grabs a branch and pries open the wooden crate. Tomato soup and prepackaged Grilled Cheese sandwiches. Not the kind you feed your kid, but ones made on good bread with a little basil added to both the sandwiches and the soup. Her needs have never been complicated, rather she prefers to keep those areas of her life as simple as possible. Sometimes for the ease of availability, but mostly because she worries about offending the spirit of Julia Child in some weird manner.
Wrapped in her blanket, nibbling on the edges of her grilled cheese Whitney awaits the last of the boxes. She can tell this one is a little larger than the last and that she might not be able to get to the contents. The odd tubing sticking out for two sides of the top, bobbing as wave after wave pushes it silently forward. This box is definitely different from the rest, its position never-changing, as if intentionally laden with it contents. As night is falling, the size of this box becomes more apparent, almost 7 feet in length, maybe 2 feet wide. Just as her eyes are closing for the night, figuring the journey of this last package would take time, she falls asleep.
Waking up in the morning Whitney realizes she is resting against someone’s shoulder. A little too familiar a feeling, she awakens with a jolt. “What are you doing here? How did you know where to find me?”
“Whitney, I would have swam from the house to wherever you were just to make sure you were safe. That you had what you needed.”
“Lary, all of these packages were things I needed to get by. Things that I couldn’t live without.”
Then I wake up…