I’m challenging myself to read at least one genre book a week, and this week I’m reading, and thoroughly enjoying, Hank Phillippi Ryan’s, Prime Time (A Charlotte McNally Mystery), 2009. I could say lots of good things about this mystery, but in today’s post I want to focus on one sentence. Not to give away the plot, let’s just say the main character Charlie McNally, an award winning investigative reporter with attitude, is running from a disaster and has time to take only one box of “stuff” with her.
“I frantically grab all that’s precious Botox, my photo albums (including the one existing snapshot of my wedding, which I can’t bring myself to destroy), Gramma’s jewelry box and Cinnamon, my battered stuffed pony, faithful friend since age three and crucial good luck charm.” (Sorry, no page number. I read it on my Kindle)
Not only did the detailing of this frantic moment tell me a lot about her character, it also made me flash back to my own life. Good books are like. They make me think about the nooks and crannies of my world. She had me wondering what I would pack into one box, faced with an emergency?
Ryan let her character have five items. What would be my five? It’s not an easy question. I came up with:
- My laptop and flash drives
- Family photos (Oh oh -Too many albums to fit into one box, so I’d probably, in haste, grab the latest. Note to self: It’s time to digitize all important photos.)
- The two framed family photos on my bedroom wall (One has my mother, father, siblings and uncle, taken years ago in black and white and the other a pic of my three grandchildren)
- The framed picture of my daughters from the living room.
- My wedding ring.
I’m assuming my cell phone is on me, but still this list feels most unsatisfactory. I’m leaving so much behind. But what exactly do I need/want?
I started thinking about the millions of refugees escaping worn-torn countries around the world with nothing but their belongings on their backs. I bet they pack food, but what else do they take? I wonder.
I thought about my main characters. One would take her guitar, another her sketch book and the third her Glock.