A Door Unopened

A Door Unopened
Knock, knock...

Thursday, June 30, 2011


When I first met my husband the possibilities of us being “us” were wide open and— at least to me—not readily apparent. Any old thing could have happened from having our first date be our last date, to submitting to the old ball and chain routine (not bloody likely in my frame of mind at the time but like I always say: Never say never.). Our random meeting on Craig's List—a wrong ad, right guy mishap—meant we knew virtually, literally, and figuratively, very little about each other at the start. So I went on what I heard and saw and drew logical conclusions. It was years before I found out my version of reality was a myth originating from the leftovers of a past love.
Tim and I met sometime in the first week of October and things went pretty well. "Pretty well" meant that by the time December rolled around I started thinking of ways to ensure Mr. Grumpy (his future, self-imposed and very apt alias) had a happy Christmas. He was brimming with bah-humbug and I felt the need to slap his bad attitude upside the head and knock the man silly with yuletide cheer. I saw it as Nativity poker. "I see your snide views on religion and commercialism and raise you with 'If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.' And to sweeten the pot I'm throwing in 'If you're gonna do it, do it right.' So there.  I call, Scrooge-dude. Read ‘em and weep."
I thoughtfully observed what interested, delighted and tickled my new beau’s fancy and followed the lead. Along with the obvious—wine, good food, photography, literature, cashmere sweaters, and sexy clothes (for me, not him) —I noted he had a fondness for eggs. In his kitchen he kept a bowl in which nested a stone egg along with a couple of blown hens’ eggs that had been dyed and intricately carved. So when I found another couple of eggs on a holiday shopping jaunt—one that subtlety chimed when shaken and one that merely looked pretty sitting in a bowl—I thought they'd be  nice additions to his burgeoning clutch.
This is one  of two bowls from our current collection. You can see one of the original carved eggs (pink and white) at about 7:00.
On Christmas morning when he opened the ovoid offerings (in addition to the basketful of other presents I showered upon him, kicking his Scrooge 'tude to the curb, not for good but for the moment) he seemed appropriately appreciative. Almost immediately the new, Noel eggs took up residence with the previously established bowl dwellers. They all seemed to get along well and eggsisted in peaceful harmony.

It wasn’t long before more egg opportunities presented themselves and we both joined in on the acquisition eggspedition. Once you have your eyes oriented toward ova you find they’re sold nearly everywhere and certainly in any place that sells souvenirs or gifty-type items. In terms of happy reminders of places you’ve visited, eggs seem to have a certain hard-boiled charm. You sift through your collection and reminisce about where you were when you got them. That marble one caught your eye in Volterra, Italy. The abalone pair you picked up in Russell, New Zealand. The little glass ones came from Moab, UT. Those faded soapstone eggs you found in Point Reyes Station but they came all the way from Tanzania. And so the scramble goes.

Years passed. The bowl in Tim’s kitchen filled and I started a bowl at my place with the eggs he bought for me. It wasn’t a huge mission in life but just a little sideline that aggreggated and multiplied. I witnessed history repeating itself. People saw I had an egg collection and wanted to help it along so they bought more eggs to contribute. Thus, they became an inanimate form of tribbles (see Star Trek episode 44: The Trouble with Tribbles for further explanation.). I started with one and suddenly the next time I looked, the bowl was overflowing and I had to get a bigger bowl. It’s a weird reproductive phenomenonwhich actually fits when you remember the fact that they are, after all, eggs.

As the eggs amassed our relationship incubated successfully. When we went to Italy for our wedding, we spent some time at Tim’s cousins’ place in Rome. Lo and behold, they too, had an egg collection. We discussed how much we liked them, and they told us where their eggs were collected and we all agreed the elliptical embodiments are kind of a cool way to bring back a piece of having been somewhere. We should have eggspected it but were nevertheless happily surprised when we opened our wedding gift from these same Roman cousins. Egged on by our shared interest, they thoughtfully gave us one pink and one blue gorgeously crafted porcelain egg from the famed Italian makers, Capidomonte. We were now officially acknowledged as egg lovers—united and celebrated in proper Italian matrimonial style.

The pink and blue Capidomante eggs frame our wedding picture. The two other stand-alone eggs were gifts.
At some point—and there is debate as to eggsactly when—but after some number of years, Tim revealed a little tidbit he'd left out of the equation: Those original eggs, the ova I spied in his kitchen long ago, were not his. Nope. It was not his collection at all—it was his previous girlfriend's. I remember sitting there blinking at him, feeling slightly dumbfounded. The fact that they were the old girlfriend’s wasn’t overly surprising; her stuff had been strewn all over Tim’s place in those early days of getting to know him. What waylaid me was that this was the first time I was hearing about it. All those years—perhaps 4 or more—we'd been slowly gathering our congregation and I suddenly find out the primordial pile was contributed by the ex. It was an oddly eggsasperating moment when I realized—I accidentally poached her eggs!
I suppose I could have gotten mad; instead I cracked a huge grin. I mean you have to admit—it’s funny. What it boils down to is that we have an eggsquisite collection including the seed eggs from my husband’s old flame. It’s a perfect eggsample of befuddlement by way of eggstrapolation. So in addition to having stories to tell about from whence our eggs came, I’ve hatched the story of the inception of their collection. Eggscellent!

Our second bowl of eggs has a smattering from New Zealand, Moab, Volterra, Tanzania by way of Point Reyes Station, and the Christmas jingle egg.


  1. Lyn, this is both sweet and funny - a difficult combination to pull off. It deserves wider circulation and being printed on real paper - why not send it to magazines or newspapers? Who knows, you may have a new career as a columnist if this great piece is anything to go by...

  2. Very interesting. I didn't know you collected eggs, and I thought I knew you pretty well. Just shows that we are all more interesting than anybody can ever realize.