Matchbox Car Memory

This week, I am back to commuting to work. It’s a very short drive from my house to my school. Just five traffic lights. Just three right turns and a left. A total of 2.2 miles. But I still have the radio on as I drive and it is always tuned to my local NRP station, WAMU 88.5.

This morning, as I waited at the 2nd traffic light, the singer- songwriter, Kat Edmonson, was being interviewed by NPR Morning Edition host, Rachel Martin about her Song Project entry, “If You’re Scared”. (You can hear it HERE).”

As the light turned green, I heard her say, “this is harkening back to when I was a little kid, you know? Adults would come over to the house and I would make an announcement: ‘There will be a show in five minutes!'”

I don’t remember anything else from the interview because her childhood announcement took me back to visits to my mother-in-law’s home. My husband, the youngest of five, our two girls and a whole day playing with their six cousins while the adults sat in the living room and chatted. Day after Christimas, Easter, a Saturday in July. The go-to game was setting up the runs and loops of the circa 1950 matchbox track in the basement. Then it would happen, just like in the radio story. The grandkids would trample up the stairs and announce “There will be a car race in five minutes!”

As I made my last right hand turn and pulled into my parking space, I found myself wiping my wet eyes. I guess I miss those matchbox car performances, two dozen years ago now. I guess I miss family gatherings. Period. My mind also started thinking of my niece, the oldest girl cousin, now expecting her own baby girl. As I shifted the car into park, I vowed to myself to buy some matchbox cars for her baby shower gift!