Monday, July 11, 2011

Wherin I have a Broken Heart

Name: Charles
Description: Beloved stuffed penguin
Age: 24 years old
Last seen: the rumpled bed at a fine hotel in Scottsdale, AZ

He's lost! My most treasured and oldest possession is lost! I am beside myself.

I know you all think that my the only inanimate friend in my life is Mustard. But no. Long before Mustard there was Charles. And now ... Charles is LOST!! It's really probably the worst thing that has ever happened to me in my entire life. I'm NOT KIDDING.

Think of it like this: If my life were Toy Story (and let's face it, I really do secretly believe that all inanimate objects have secret lives when I'm not around), Charles is Woody and Mustard is Buzz. So while Buzz is funny and weird and oh so hilarious to write about in a blog, it's Woody that is the heart of the operation. Charles is like that. He's stable, and understanding, and lets me cry on his shoulder and use him as a neck pillow. He's cool like that. As long as I'm happy, his crinkly little eyes are still happy.

Since I was twelve, Charles has been there for it all. In the montage flashback, in addition to the sappy hugging and eskimo kisses that go without saying between a girl and her stuffed penguin, these are the images you'd see :

  • Throwing him up in the air by his little wings doing flips and twists in the Penguin Olympics
  • Performing "Electric Charles" - a static electricity light show that was popular during my college years
  • Riding shotgun during many roadtrips, serving as Co-Pilot and Navigator
  • Arriving in a cramped shoebox in Santiago, Chile. My Mom sent him to me because I was so home sick. He single-handedly saved me from a nervous break down.
  • Listening patiently while I cry and rant about one thing or another ... men, or work, or well ok, mostly work.
When I started this three month hotel stay, I brought Charles with me as a little piece of home. I checked in and out of about 15 hotels as I bounced across the country. Yesterday I checked out of the last one and went to go get the keys to the home I have purchased. The journey was over! And as I was unpacking the 3 suitcases I've been living out of I suddenly realized that I hadn't packed him. He had been left in the bed. I HAD LEFT CHARLES!! No mother who left her child at a gas station has felt worse than I did. Well, I didn't even think twice before grabbing my keys and driving to the hotel. A phone call just wouldn't do.

But no luck. They couldn't find him. I'm still holding out hope, calling every day ... but you know know the stats. If they don't find missing people within 24 hours the chances diminish significantly. I'm sure that the maid just thought he was so damn cute she had to keep him.

I'm brokenhearted. And yeah, I'm too old to still have a stuffed animal. And you gotta cut the cord some time. But I can't believe I am starting over in a new city, and I don't have my most constant companion to begin my new adventure with me. I love that little guy.

I'm sad.


erinmalia said...

oh honey i'm so sorry. chuck and i are both saddened by your loss. hopefully he'll return home soon!

aje&h said...

Oh, gretch. This is tragic. I am so sorry.

Lirpa said...

I have a camel named Ali Baba. I can only imagine how heartbreaking this must be :( Hopefully he finds his way home to you!

Maren said...

I bet that Bridgette would share one of her animals with you. :)

liloat said...

Poor Charles! My heart is broken for you, gretch. I would be devastated if I lost my bear. thinking of all the happy family vacations with charles and my bear tucked by our sides. Hoping for a happy ending.