For reasons I have yet to uncover, much of my childhood was not retained — at least not by me. I do not remember the games I played, the friends I had. I do not remember my favorite food, my first crush. I remember insignificant moments of notable events, but very few everyday nuances.
I remember exactly what the gas mask looked like as it approached my face when I had my tonsils taken out in, but nothing else about the second grade. I remember the sound my sister’s feet made when she stepped on the steel plate in our driveway at 3:30 in the afternoon on a hot, sunny summer afternoon; the plate that could have, at that moment, probably fried an egg. I do not however, remember a single other day spent playing in that driveway, though I know from the stories she tells they were plentiful.
In fact, the only small, every day occurrence I remember in detail is also the only every day occurrence I remember at all. Peculiarly, it’s the only memory I have that can at even the slightest hint of its components flood my senses with everything it is made of.