The simplest things can trigger memories and stories. Our refrigerator blew up yesterday. It has sat in our kitchen for the past 18 years. So of course on one level it is just an inanimate object. But it is an appliance from a bygone era having lasted that long. I don’t think there is much else in this house that is that old. Most items die or become obsolete in a very short space of time.
But it is more the social function of the fridge that was interesting. It has a colourful collection of fridge magnets accumulated over many years. Invites to weddings, funerals, birthdays. Children’s art, teenager art, graffitti art, tags, shakepearean fridge magnet words, poems and one liners dreamed up by many friends and family as they doodled with words during conversations.
The Fridge has groaned with food and drinks year in year out. It has been raided at all hours of the day and night. What hastened its demise I think, was the fact that the back of the fridge had become a home to a family of mice. Pulling the fridge out from the wall, a very obvious little hole in the floor showed the route for may be more than one family of mice.
We bought this fridge 25 years ago, when living in a community surviving on welfare. It was a huge purchase, Jane bought it on Hire Purchase from the now long gone Farmers Trading Department store in downtown Auckland.
This appliance sure had a great patina. But despite the death of the fridge, and the memories and stories it evokes, I wont miss it at all. It’s seals had perished long ago, it leaked, iced up, and I think chewed far too much power. There is a gleaming white new model in its place now. It makes ice, has lots of useful compartments, and so far, no fridge magnets. The manual says you can’t put anything on the top. So the collection of Stuff that used to inhabit the top of the fridge, has gone.
RIP old fridge, and welcome you gleaming new beauty (o00pps my appliance fetish is raising its head!) I do wonder though if this new one will be here in 25 years time…..