Thursday, January 31, 2008


Sometimes all you can do is salvage. Sift through the rubble, flick ashes off of the photo frame, dig dishes out from under the wreckage of lumber, bricks, and debris. The instant culture shock of finding your expected haven a dump of your life doesn't curtail the instinct to step carefully over the remaining bits in search of familiar items.
I had a big interview yesterday. It took me about three months to get it. I prepared, I checked my equipment, I moved myself into a quiet space, I double checked everything.
It went great. Rich, pithy quotes, spot-on comments that would appeal to the audience and strengthen the arguments made in other areas. It was illuminating. It was fascinating.
It was lost.
After checking and rechecking the recording device, testing it multiple times, putting new batteries in the thing, taping a "do not disturb" sign on the interview room door...
It didn't record. My three month in the making interview never made it to tape.
Last night was not a good night.
This morning I hoped that God had miraculously inscribed the tape with the speaker's voice. He didn't.
But my boss, with compassion on his face for the misery on mine, encouraged me to salvage. To take the few handwritten notes I'd jotted down and somehow intersperse them with quotes from the book or something.
Interestingly, I'd taken more notes than I'd realized, often with direct quotes of words, phrases and sentences. And those notes spurred memories of more words, phrases and remarks. (I have a very literal memory when it comes to words sometimes. Ask me about vast stretches of Little House on the Prairie books. What part would you like me to quote or paraphrase?) So I ended up salvaging.
I have an accurate, usable, albeit shorter interview to show for my labor. It would have been wonderful to triumph in my glory with a recording that had to be edited down because it was so great and so long. But sometimes, you salvage.
Thank goodness for salvaging. We all do it sometimes, whether it's the remains of a burned supper, the vestiges of a home, or the scraps of an interview. God leaves us a remnant, and we find it enough.
So, today, here's to enough.


Carrie said...

Oh, how I can ache for you. I've done enough salvaging in the past couple of weeks to be able to throughly relate.

I'm glad you were able to salvage.

Bob said...

I wish I could have been there to console you Elizabeth. I feel the anguish and disappointment you felt--I really do. I remember times when you were small and would lose something of great value to you and how I felt bad with you...but alas, as much as I would like to have been your consoler, you have a new husband that will take on that role. I hope he took you into his arms and hugged you real tight. I will always be your daddy, but I gave up my duties as head consoler on January 4th.--daddy