I organized my journals recently. They come in many different shapes, sizes, and formats, and though the entries don’t always follow a chronological order, they are now all in clear plastic bins, roughly grouped by year.
During the sorting process, slips or folded sheets of paper would occasionally slide out of a book or spiral binder. It was in this way that I found a story I thought I had lost. Written during the time my sister and I were roommates in the University District of Seattle in the early-to-mid 90’s, it was printed in the pixelated dot matrix format of the printer I used back then. I typed everything I wrote into my “Mac-in-the-Box”, a tiny computer/monitor combo about the size of shoebox (a large one, for boots) turned sideways.
I may have these writings saved on a “floppy disc” somewhere, a hard square-shaped, flattened Wonderbread slice-sized piece of plastic that is neither floppy nor the round shape of a disc. But even if I found it, I don’t know how I would ever get the data off of it. The lesson is to keep printed copies of everything I write.
The story in question, called Value Village, brought back many images, memories, and feelings – flashes of walking alone in the dark, sitting on buses, moving around in the world amongst mostly strangers. I Googled the locations of Value Village in Seattle, so I could go back and visit the one my sister worked at so long ago, but none of them seemed to be the right one . Did that particular branch of the store close down? Is the building still standing? Did I imagine the whole thing?
Please find the story, Value Village, posted under Stories (in the Writings category).