SOLC Day 27: My Desktop

March 2023 SOLC–Day 27
A huge thank you to Two Writing Teachers for all that they do to create an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write, learn, share and grow.

Not long ago someone was helping me with something technical and took a look at my computer desktop. I wish I had a picture of their face. They were, simply put, horrified.

“OMG!” they said, “How can you do that!?!”

My desktop, you see is a mass of collaged files, screen shots, and pictures haphazardly scattered about. Here’s just a portion of it all:

I suspect some of you have similar expressions on your faces right now. And sometimes I do too. I look at this mad mess and think, “Ugh. This is insane. I really need to do something about this.”

But then I start looking at picture after picture and I just get lost. Each one holds a story, a memory. When I start browsing, I relive those moments.

Looking for a slice to write, I fell right into that time warp again this morning.

Here’s one of an early winter morning years ago. I had been wandering along the coast by myself, hoping to see a snowy owl. Instead I saw this solitary tree, this rippled sky. Looking at the picture, I remember standing boots deep in snow, marveling at both.

Or this one. After a marsh visit, I was running late. I had loaded up my camera, got in the car, and turned onto the main road to head home. I saw this great blue heron and pulled over. I spent long minutes watching it appear and disappear in the marsh grass. I was even later at this point, but felt time spin out and away. I don’t know how long I watched, but I can fall into that moment again as I look at the picture.

Or this one that captures a simple moment in the garden outside my window, when light transformed a hydrangea blossom into something radiant and almost holy.

Sometimes I’ll click on a picture and it will bring back a totally forgotten moment. This one is surely a slice in the making.

So many pictures capturing so many moments. Moments I want to write about. Moments I want to remember. Moments that allow me to revisit something bigger than myself. Some are moments I’m not ready to write about yet– This early morning field scene holds magic and grief, intertwined. Perhaps someday I’ll write about it.

Pictures of people are few and far between, but they pop up along with their tendrils of story and long ago adventure. Here’s one of all of us in Dublin. How was this 6 years ago? Or was it 7? Still, I remember that night, the Dublin streets at the end of our vacation. Our last dinner before heading home.

There’s a world on my desktop. In winter the greens of spring and summer pictures seem unreal. In the depths of summer, winter’s shivery blues and whites seem otherworldly. Each picture is a touchstone. A portal. I like the collage aspect of it all, the way moving one picture reveals another layer beneath. An image long forgotten or one held dear. There’s a randomness to it that appeals to me. I like to wander through them, like a scrapbook of memories. To time travel, to marvel, to remember.

Now that I think about it, why would I want to tidy them up, to whisk them away into organized files or folders? I can live with the mess and appreciate all that it offers. At least for now.

15 thoughts on “SOLC Day 27: My Desktop

  1. humbleswede says:

    Well…if I had photos like that to teleport me back or away, then maybe I could handle that collage. The solitary tree, the heron, and the hydrangea are mesmerizing, and I’m not reliving the actual. But yikes! that’s a crazy desktop. I always have a desk like that in real life, but somehow I need an orderly computer desktop. Different strokes…

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      I just search for what I need and can manage that way. There is something reassuring about an orderly desktop, but when I try to do that, I get portalled away. Or I have too many photos that defy categorizing. I could definitely trim out some odd screenshots and other miscellaneous matter. Maybe that will be a summer project. Or maybe not.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. lynnedorfman says:

    Well, your photographs are amazing! I can see why you want them near, right on your desktop. They seem to offer many opportunities to write. Thanks for sharing. I hope you’ve printed some and framed them for a space on the walls of your home. They’d make great gifts, too. What a great hobby!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. maryleehahn says:

    With a “mess” that beautiful, it definitely seems better to redefine it as a collage. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Amanda Potts says:

    Those photos are gorgeous – and then you add the memories – no wonder you don’t mind the “mess”. You say, “There’s a world on my desktop” and I don’t think I’ve ever seen it that way before, but I will now. (Also, do you read Lisa Corbett at A Little of this, a little of that? She wrote about her desktop today, too – you might be kindred spirits:

    Liked by 2 people

  5. kd0602 says:

    Oooh! I am transported through your portal. And it’s always reassuring to see that others function with a desktop that some would call a mess. My downfall is all the tabs on my internet browser–I can’t seem to function without a dozen or more open and waiting for me. “There’s a world on my desktop.” I love that line.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. margaretsmn says:

    What a beautiful mess! Keep it just where it is. It’s this generation of the box of old photos that no one got around to putting into albums. I think I just recently threw away the negatives.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Lisa Corbett says:

    Amanda Potts sent me over! I wrote about my messy computer too. I love your photos and the way the transport you to another place. I can see why you want them open for easy access. There used to be a way to get the Mac to use all the photos as a rotating screensaver. Maybe that still works? I use a work computer so I don’t keep too many photos on mine, but now I want to. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      I might have to check out that rotating screensaver idea. Also, I thoroughly enjoyed your post. You have me wondering if I should consider a touch of reorganization. Even though I’m messy, order appeals to me as well! (My school computer’s desktop is in MUCH better shape!)


  8. Celia Fisher says:

    The photos are breathtaking, especially the hydrangea. But i’m not sure I could live with that desktop.


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