An afterlife of a paper tea box

by Lilia Efimova on February 7, 2011

Paper tea box that’ve been at Alexander’s play kitchen for ages went into recycling. A few days after he founds a lid of it and then realises that the box is not there anymore and can’t be brought back. The tears of loss come and then I embrace him in my arms to tell a story.

A story of a paper tea box that went into an exciting journey.

First to sit on a curb with other papers we put there. He knows – we do that every month.

Then to travel in a paper garbage machine, the one that Alexander finds so fascinating to look at, when it comes with blinking lights and a crew of guys who pick up piles and boxes from the curb and throw them inside the machine’s belly.

Then to a recycling factory – to soak in the water, to mix with pieces of other papers, to whirl, to be sifted, pressed and dried on a screen. He knows that too – we made paper together.

And then it became a box, like those that the postman brings, that hide new gadgets or books or “something for papa” that is actually a present not to be seen before the due date.

And then a tiny piece of the tea box that became part of the parcel that comes to our house smiles from recognising the place where it had a good time playing in the kitchen.

And then Alexander starts smiling and I know that the cycle is complete…

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