In a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri: On the second floor of my parents' house: in the closet of what used to be my bedroom: behind a cabinet full of books: behind the cover of an air vent: in a small tin taped to the side of the air duct, seven or eight inches from the entrance, is a spare key to a car that I no longer own, accompanied by $100 in cash. This small package was something I kept entirely to myself... hoarding the knowledge of its existence. It was my getaway plan; a nest egg for independence. As a senior in high school, I was really too old to be thinking about running away; college was only a year off. But for some reason the idea that if my parents pissed me off, took away my atm card, or even took away the key to my car, I could still drive off and buy enough gas to get a few states away....not that I ever would :)
Also, I just like hiding things. There is a wrought iron key that I bought at an antique store taped under my bed in that house. There is a poem I wrote (a VERY poorly written one) taped to the back of the mirror on my dresser...notes to myself stuffed in books that I loved (Vicky, you found one of these when I lent you that book last week! Remember the "supplies for an ant farm" list?) and spare change and small bills tucked in between blankets in the hall closet...just for a little surprise for me (or anyone, I guess) to find later. It's kind of like leaving a five dollar bill in the pocket of your winter jacket when you put it away in the spring so you can find it in the fall.
I'm not entirely sure where or when this habit started but I know that I've always liked having secrets. I love knowing something (even if it's something I've created for the sake of HAVING a secret) that nobody else knows about. It makes me stand up a little straighter and talk with a little more confidence.
As you may recall, I have mentioned before that I am a woman of extremes: I carry an idea much farther than is reasonable. That said, it should not surprise you that because I naturally like to have secrets (NOT necessarily that I'm good at keeping them, though sometimes I can be) there was a significant period in my life when I thought that I was meant to become a spy. I think this zenful moment is going to begin a short (very short, it may end tomorrow or the next day, so don't get your hopes too high) series on why I would be a good spy....or why I used to think I would enjoy being a spy...all of the perks without the work.
Good night kiddies. I've got a date with Mario Puzo tonight (Godfather part deux) and tomorrow's going to be a long day :)