While I was working on this blog post, I attempted to look up a story I remember hearing as a small child about a city mouse and a country mouse who take turns visiting one another. The country mouse is as unnerved by the fast pace of city life as his urban cousin is by what it’s really like to live in a old farmhouse surrounded by fields and hungry cats.
It was surprising when I realized that the traditional version of this tale is quite different from how I remember it. I thought it taught its audience to appreciate the differences between people and realize that what you or I see as an acceptable risk or drawback might cross the line for someone else. It turns out that this fable actually teaches that accepting a simple, modest existence is better than living in fear.
It makes me wonder what was really in the little book that made such a strong impression on me. None of my searches have turned up anything similar to it. This is one of those mysteries of early childhood that will probably never be solved.
I was originally planning to use today’s post to talk about finding the value in other ways of looking at the world. To be honest, though, I’m far more interested in how much memories can change over time.
What have you misremembered lately? How did you discover that your memory of what happened (probably) isn’t actually true?