Sunday, 30 September, 2012

The Burning House

"If your house was burning, what would you take with you? It's a conflict between what's practical, valuable and sentimental. What you would take reflects your interests, background and priorities. Think of it as an interview condensed into one question." -

I have often found answering questions like 'If I die tomorrow, what things would I do/If I was stuck on a lonely island, what would I bring/What is my all time favourite movie?' very difficult. It is almost always difficult for me to narrow down on things that are really important or lifechanging for me. Maybe because I have so many.

Then I came across someone's very interesting photo project called 'The Burning House'. The premise is simple enough-the photographer photographs items of sentimental (or otherwise) value a person would grab if their house caught on fire.

As I browsed through the hipster-like, sometimes pretentious, items (I mean, someone had said they'd take Ayn Rand's 'The Fountainhead' with them. Can you say Hipster?) I began questioning myself about this topic. What things would I grab if my house caught on fire?

The obvious things came to me first-wallet, phone, camera and important documents. The bare necessities were a given. But when it came to things of sentimental value, I was absolutely stumped. At first I racked my brain, trying to think of pretentious books I could carry, but realised I had none. None that I'd re-read anyway.

Would I carry that photo album my late grandfather made for me? The one and only love letter someone once wrote for me? My diary as a teenager? My favourite T-shirt I own since 1999? Or something else?

I have no definite answer, because the above is a tiny fragment of a huge list that is my life. So many instances, so many memorabilia and so difficult to choose one that means most to me.

I suppose what matters are priorities. And once I have that figured out, I will revisit this question and maybe have a concrete answer. Till then, I pray my house never cathches fire.

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