It all began around 3 a.m., when sudden thoughts about collections entered my mind. Since childhood I've suffered from horrible insomnia. My body is accustomed to minimal sleep because it has no other choice. Even when I'm exhausted it takes me at least one hour to fall asleep, followed by numerous awakenings throughout the night. The silence and boredom in the middle of the night sometimes opens the door for obsessive thinking. Neurosis starts to set in - why am I alone? Why is there no one in my bed to talk to or play with? When can I leave my job and pursue my dreams? Tears, tissues, loneliness. :)) Usually I read to occupy my mind, but even this has made me restless recently. So early this morning I started organizing my hat collection. In total I have about 50 hats, most of which were purchased abroad or at craft shows.
1. I try to find a hat in every country I visit, but sadly in Russia I didn't buy one. What a pity because there are some great hats there. My favorite hats are multi-colored and most have balls on the top or ends. One of my friends made me this brown and yellow hat, which I wear frequently.
2. But this is my favorite! My bear hat, purchased this winter at a U.S. store called "Walmart." This store is similar to Aшан, selling food, clothes, household items, etc. My mother hates this hat and always tells me it's "creepy." :)
3. In addition to hats, I collect cheap wigs. I don't know why. It started a few years ago at Halloween when my nephew wanted me to be a witch. I've always liked black hair on men and women, so after the black witch wig I started buying others. I have a blonde one, but it's really awful! Sometimes I'll play dress up, be an entirely different person and go out on the town.
4. A common theme with my collections is the ability to cover my head. :) Mostly it's because I have crazy curly hair that's hard to manage. I couldn't find a good example except the below, a crappy web cam pic taken after a day at the pool last summer. Heat and humidity - a curly-haired girl's nightmare. Of course it also can look nice but only after a lot of work. Perhaps this is another reason I hate summer. It's too warm to wear hats, so my hair usually stays in a ponytail or bun.
5. Recently I started collecting things from the Soviet era, like this propaganda poster I purchased at a cool bookstore in Moscow. I have three others and two readers have sent me childrens' books from Soviet times. I'm still waiting for both to arrive in my mailbox.
Like other travelers, I also have a large collection of refrigerator magnets from various countries. When I traveled to Thailand about ten years ago I started collecting Buddhas, and friends often buy them for me at home and abroad. I keep most hand-written notes and cards given to me, including postcards, cute notes from old boyfriends, napkin notes, etc. The strangest things which have significant sentimental value to me, all sitting in a box in my closet. I even have hair from my old boyfriend in a plastic bag. It sounds odd and serial killer like, but it's a great memory from our relationship - the first time I ever cut his very long hair.
What drives us to collect certain things? I'm not sure, but I think every person has some item they routinely search for no matter the location. How about my readers? I'm always curious to learn more about you, so please share what you collect in the comments. And any tips for battling insomnia also are appreciated!