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My Treasures, Continued

By Betsy Yung

June 9, 2012

Continuing my inventory of stuff saved from what seems like other lifetimes I've lived ... on some other planet far away from here or perhaps another reality. It's hard to collate life now with anything it was before. I wish I could find a way to explain, but I just can't find enough of the right words to convey what I'm feeling. I'll trust that you'll bear with me through this process ... I'm a beginner at all this.

Anyway, another tray-full of precious treasures:

  • Perhaps not-so-precious are four old California drivers' licenses showing me from years 1980, 1984, 1989 and 2005. I wonder where the rest are. All carry the "Donor" sticker. Guess I don't get to be a donor now.
  • In the same category, there's my ID badge from my years at Transamerica Insurance Group, 1989-1994. Good picture, I was a pretty girl. Not nearly as young and bohemian as the photo of me that appears on the high school ID card from Verdugo Hills High dated 1977-1978. Hair long and parted in the center like all pretty hippie girls.
  • A black book of matches with the name "Just-A-Nod Ebony Jet." That was the name of the horse, retired with a lavish party hosted by the family of my childhood friend Liz Goth. She's still fabulously wealthy.
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  • A name badge I wore when I went to Marinello school of beauty. Yes, I was a licensed manicurist for a few years back in the '80s.
  • A brass pin with my name, the Hilton logo and the title of "Computer Analyst." This a job I held for a couple of years in the mid '90s.
  • A dog's name tag, "Tabu." She was a Doberman I had before I married. Also another name-tag, "Nike." He was a big seven-toed Maine Coon cat I loved dearly. He died in 1993.
  • An odd collection of ticket stubs which include Genesis and Yes -- both dated 1978 and from the Fabulous Forum, Yes again in 1998 and Creed in 2000 -- both at Universal Amphitheater, then Metallica, Korn and Kid Rock (2000) at the LA Coliseum, a stub from the Pantages dated 1980 (I think it was a play), a stub from the Winternationals drag races 1989 and the crowning glory of all stubs, the Treasures of King Tutankhamun April 24, 1978. The most fantastic things I've ever seen!
  • Two little, tiny silver thimbles that once belonged to my grandmother.
  • A tiny carved ivory pill box belonging to my mother's sister, Betty, for whom I was named Elizabeth.
  • My dad's silver name bracelet from his service in the U.S. Navy.
  • A tiny horse head I carved from a small block of Lexan back in the days of dollhouse building and miniature-making.
  • My grandma's tiny, brass magnifying glass. She used to wear it on a chain around her neck so she could check the stitches in her needlepoint.
  • My dad's printers' loupe from the IPI. He used it to check the printing of the old TV Guide, when he ran the company that printed it back in the '60s and '70s.
  • Finally, an item that I put in my treasure box just days before I landed in the hospital ICU with an AIDS diagnosis, the "Hard Card" I received from the opening day at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte NC in May of 2010. I had stayed with Vince for a week while he was working there. He returned home to California the day I went on life support.

So, there's a few more things you've learned about me via the treasures in my little case.

I've enjoyed the trip down memory lane. I haven't looked at most of these things in a long, long time.

Since my ass is falling asleep now, it's time to do a little walking to please my ID doctor who wants my CD4 count to be higher than my weight by the next time I see him.

Smile, stay on the sunny side of the street and take life one day at a time. Always give an honest opinion and always use a condom.

Love and hugs,

Send Betsy an email.

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See Also
More Personal Accounts of Women With HIV/AIDS

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My Evil Hitchhiker

Betsy Yung

Betsy Yung

Just your average, hard-working, middle-aged lady living with AIDS and making the best of it.

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