I Need a Light

It could be our advancing age, but John and I both want a source of light--or extra light--everywhere these days. His purchases tend to be battery-operated lanterns of many sizes and BIG flashlights. Mine are little and cute, and it's nice if they're attractive too.
Saturday I found a six-pack of 3-inch Maglites in pretty colors, and I've been stashing them everywhere ever since. The one I set next to my chair in the living room paid for itself almost immediately when I came in from a walk, felt a tick on my leg, and tried to catch it. It jumped onto our mottled beige carpet and went invisible--until I searched with my tiny light. There he was, and there he went!
There's a light next to the computer so I can see where the cords plug in. I hung a light on my key chain so I can see to open the door when I come home late. I set a light beside my bed for when I get up in the night. I bought a lighted magnifier for reading the fine print they put on product packaging (smaller than 8 point should be illegal).
You might remember the flashlights of the past that weighed fifty pounds (well, maybe not quite) and lasted about five minutes. A family had one or two, but when you needed them, they were likely to be in a drawer somewhere with dead batteries. Count how many cordless lights you have in your home and car. Don't forget to count your phone if you have the app!
All the light we carry around with us these days makes me think about the poor people of the past who had to either stumble in the dark or fuss with flint and candles. Imagine a world where dark really meant dark; where light was limited in its reach and dangerous if left untended; where having it meant work: gathering and dipping rushes, rendering fat for candles, keeping tinder available and dry.
Sure makes me appreciate my cute little purple flashlight with the decorative rhinestones!


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