Stash Boxes – Ophelia Chong

An ode to Ophelia’s stash box.

When we met I was just a casual shoe box. Over time, as our relationship progressed I made the transition to a Tupperware plastic bin. It was in Tokyo, in that sweet little shopping bag we fell in love.  As our relationship intensified, she flirted with flowers, grinders, rolling papers and even offering me that cherished banged up disposable lighter.

Things were great until 2016. She met someone new. Someone more refined with a delectable refinery of good tastes. Sadly, I could not compete. I was a merely an outdated shoebox, filled with chaos and regrets. Reduced to a mess of rusty grinders, crinkled rolling papers laid out on a worn out tray.  I will never forget that scowl, those raised eyebrows, both riddled with judgment. She was serving Beluga caviar on a plastic top from a can of Pringles. I knew we’d soon be over.

Ophelia needed more. Something better than my “Are you a hoarder with that setup?” motif.  Our breakup was painful and swift. Unsure but full of hope, she was determined to find what I could not offer. Beauty. Refinement. A legacy of fine craftsmanship.

She gathered up the trinkets of our time together. The water pipe from Shanghai, the handmade tea box from Beijing, that precious grinder from that night with the gift bag and a collection of vintage rolling papers from Amorphia, the non-profit precursor to NORML. Putting them in the back of her closet, along with her memories of me.

I will always love her, even though we were never meant to be. For I was only a box, only capable of holding onto stale memories. Her new love can give her more than I could ever desire. A relationship filled with perfectly composed joints, along with shiny new grinding and rolling tools.

Farewell, my love. I hope you’ll think of me in your exhales and smoke rings.

– This was written by OC’s shoe box which has gladly handed the torch to the new improved box and is now retired to a nice spot in the closet filled with socks that lost their mates.

Also published on Medium.