Life’s little mysteries

MysteryHow’s your inventory of unsolved mysteries? I’m not talking of suspense novels you started reading but that failed to hold your attention, or of difficult concepts you never managed to wrestle into submission. I’m thinking more of things that happened that made no sense, and that never gave you the chance to say, “well, it turns out that….” Or what about things that you lost and did not later find between the sofa cushions or under the passenger seat of the car? Those, too, can be mysteries.

My friend Cheryl once told me that she has long puzzled over what could possibly have happened to the bathing suit she left to dry on the shower rod at her in-laws’ home 30 years ago. I can’t believe that any of her sisters-in-law were covetous and made away with it–they’re too tall for it to have fit them. And pets can’t generally reach things hung over the shower rod. Like I said, a mystery.

Sometime in April the pepper mill disappeared. As I described here, our Spanish apartment was minimally supplied with furnishings and provisions–it really was possible to search the whole house if something was lost. But the pepper mill? I didn’t think I needed to go upstairs and pull the suitcases out from under the beds, or look to see if it was lurking behind books on Ninja’s bookshelf. How far does a pepper mill go?

I usually wanted it when I had a spoon in one hand stirring something on the stove, or when the family was settling down to make short work of the meal–not the moment to organize a search party. I’d give a quick glance to see if it was in the dry goods cupboard, or the drawer where we kept the other spices, or behind the crock with the whisk and the wooden spoons. No luck.

I did finally conduct a very thorough search of the kitchen (Is it down with the mop bucket and the rags? Up hiding behind the dishes? Behind the peanut stash?), but the result was only perplexity and incipient concern regarding the likelihood of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease.

Jared Lisa in Jardin Royal tree sm

Loquita and Fiddler up a tree in the Jardín Real, the scene of the “crime.”

At last, long after I had stopped either actively or idly wondering about its whereabouts, I found it in the side pocket of a tote bag. (!) I must have put it there one day when we took boiled eggs on a picnic to the Jardín Real, and subsequently neglected to do what I know I should always do after an outing: immediately put everything away. So for five weeks we had missed the pepper grinder, and in between searches I wondered whether it had fallen into the trash and been pitched by mistake. I’m fairly certain that when our children were young, more than one piece of flatware went out with the garbage, as dropping shiny things into containers is many a child’s idea of a good time. (If they didn’t go there, I can’t otherwise account for the dwindling of our supply.)

Not much to look at, I know. But at least the mystery is solved!

Not much to look at, I know. But it gave rise to such a puzzlement!

So that’s one mystery (belatedly) solved. I don’t think interrogating Cheryl’s sisters-in-law will bring up any new evidence in the case of the missing bathing suit–it’s officially in the “cold case” file. Now, have you got any little mysteries? I’m ready for some new material to puzzle over.

4 thoughts on “Life’s little mysteries

  1. There’s the case of the missing winter gloves– found, of course, in the pockets of the winter jacket, sleeping all through the summer in the coat closet. Both Bill and I “lost” our gloves this way, and found them the same way, independently. It seems that one of us discovering the gloves didn’t translate to both of us knowing where the second pair probably were– Alzheimer’s?

  2. Yes , lots of small things, once even all of the tomatoes from my small garden, sweaters, change, a package of ground turkey that I bought to make tacos. At times I thought I was going crazy. Then one night we came back from Maine and the bathroom off of our bedroom smelled peculiar. I sorted and went to bed after a long ride. Next day I talked to my son’s girlfriend who had my permission to do laundry at our house and she said when she got there she heard the upstairs toilet flush and she panicked and called my son to pick her up.
    I was really concerned till I found an acquaintance who used to regale me with stories of Irish gypsies. Long story short. I found this person’s long curly hair in my tub and was in a mild state of shock to realize this person knew my comings and goings and took minor things she thought I might “not notice.” This went on for a few years; I even thought it might be a ghost! Now we lock up on trips and don’t say where we are going until we are back. I’m glad it wasn’t worse.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s