..and no, I’m not talking about boyfriends.
Say hello to the Sony Walkman NWZ-B173F, who has been my constant (okay, maybe not that constant, but still) companion through the years. Never failing. Always delivering. And definitely more reliable than some of my exes, lol.
It was early September of 2012, and I had just finished a three-month long summer exchange programme in the UK. Before leaving for our post graduation trip to Europe, I thought of getting an MP3 player for all the long hours we’d be spending on the bus. Back then, Sony had just released the NWZ and it was going for about 30£ (about RM150), so it seemed like a really good deal.
And guess what? I couldn’t have asked for more. Charges fast, super long battery life (I can play it non-stop for 8 hours a day and it still lasts at least 2-3 days) and at more than enough storage space at 4GB. I continued using it when I got back to Malaysia, but me being a klutz, lost it in the Cracks of Doom – that space in between the handbrakes of the car. This was in the middle of 2014 lol.
So the MP3 sat there, awaiting the day it would finally be freed – until a couple of months ago when I lost my house keys inside the crack, and my dad was forced to open it up with a screw lol. Out popped the Sony! I had actually forgotten all about it, so twas’ a pleasant surprise. Even more amazing – there was still battery in it when I pressed play, after TWO years. If that isn’t solid performance, I don’t know what is.
Ever since losing the Sony, I only had one other MP3 – the iPod Shuffle – which I got from a lucky draw. Granted the item was free, I still didn’t like using it because Apple is a bitch with ‘exclusivity’. It was super troublesome to transfer all the songs into iTunes and then to the device, instead of directly downloading them like with regular MP3s. You also can’t make ‘folders’ to sort out your music. I mean, somedays I want to listen to metal and on other days I want softer stuff, so not having the option to choose was annoying.
I was ecstatic at having my Sony back. These days, I listen to it everyday on the commute to work, being careful not to let it slip into the dark depths again. It just occurred to me that this MP3 has been with me longer than some people. It has been with me through three (ex) boyfriends and numerous life-changing moments. It was there playing Little White Doves, my ‘theme’ song on our roadtrip around Europe. It was there when I broke up with CK, my high school boyfriend of five years. It was there playing Placebo’s Without You I’m Nothing while I bawled my eyes out after Matt dumped me and I felt like shit. It was there playing Another Love by Tom Odell, when I got dumped by a guy who shared the same name, after he had used and abused me.
But after each time with Sony, I felt better.
Music played a big part in pulling me out of my own darkness, and without the Walkman, I guess I would have been.. a little more depressed. Who knows?
Writing this, I realise that the MP3 player is a ‘constant’ in a life that has changed a lot in the past four years. My late teens and early 20s were a turbulent time. I was insecure, had low self confidence and made a lot of bad decisions that hurt a lot of people (including myself).
Things are definitely better now.
We associate so many things with memories, and they take on meaning because we allow them to. To others, this might just be an old, scratched up MP3, but to me, this device is an archive of sorts, a keeper of memories and a reminder about my past.
I’m sure if you check back in a couple of years, it’s contents will be really different.