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The room has a tossed look. A pile of pillows pushed into the corner of the bed. Pushed there by last night’s sleep. On the bed is a white comforter. It has a black floral print. White pillows lay side by side with throw pillows.
This is the room of a reader. Two books lay on the bed. “Leaving a Trace” and “The Thich Nhat Hanh Collection.” Also the room of a thinker.
The bed is situated in the corner of the room. A line of pillows lay against the wall. From under which peek a laptop, a tablet and a power strip. A white cord is charging a cell phone, and a black phone a watch.
Keys with pepper spray attached lay next to a blue-tooth speaker. And one of the pillows against the wall is a Minions pillow. The cat is at home on the bed. Next to a green blanket. A light blanket for the summer temperatures. And a black backpack.
Next to the bed are boxes used as tables. On a taller box near the wall sits a clock. A white Starbucks mug a page-a-day calendar with the date Sept 23 visible. There is a quote from Truman Capote.
Another watch sits next to the calendar. And a pile of rubber bands. They once wrapped organic broccoli. A comb with tufts of white cat hair shows how it it used.
I a corner a plastic basket has pencils. It also has pages from the calendar. And a pocket calendar sits next to the basket. It tracks the signs of the moon. On the page opened, the dates Sept. 25-27 are visible.
The top of the box is cluttered. A candle in a tin. A Hello Kitty Mint tin. Another comb, for human use. A plastic red pencil sharpener.
And books: Room to Write, Bonni Goldberg; Communion with God, Neale Donald Walsch; Words that Work, Frank Luntz and The Road to Reality, Roger Penrose.
Bookmark stick out of the pages of many books.
On a smaller box, there is more clutter. A remote to a blue-tooth sound bar. And under the remote two books. “The Coming Plague,” by Laurie Garrett sits on “The Like Switch,” by Jack Schafer. There is a credit card and small lotion on these books.
Next to the books is a lint roller. With cat hair stuck on the tape. A napkin from Subway and a rose quartz candle holder. Remains of last night’s dinner linger in a bowl. Pesto sauce puddles on the face of a woman.
More books are stacked under a deck of tarot cards: Mind Whispering, Tara Bennet-Goleman; Writing to Wake the Soul, Karen Hering; Emile, Jean-Jacques Rousseau; Switch, Chip and Dan Heath and Open All Night, Charles Bukowski.
Another box on its side serves as a bookcase, and is full of books. It sits on a full box. A white trash can sits next to the door. And next to it a crate bookcase, full of books. On top of the crate is a small four-drawer organizer. It contains cords, glass wipes, pens and pencils.
A candle with three wicks, sits next to a vase. The vase has blue flowers on the outside. Inside are fake blue flowers.
A large plastic three-drawer storage unit is a dresser. Two drawers are full of socks. The third is full of white T-shirts. On top are books leaning against against a magazine style organizer. It has magazine, papers and q-tips. In a medium storage basket are receipts. And pens, pencils and hand sanitizer.
A yellow desk sits in the corner. A TV once sat on the desk. Now a sound bar, more vases with fake flowers and books do. Also a spray deodorant. A Hello Kitty mouse pad and a plastic bottle of Bragg’s.
The desk has one long drawer. Full of random items, a lighter, a memo pad, push pins and a small rock. In the first drawer on the right are tarot cards and pencils. The drawer down has incense and lighters. And the bottom drawer is heavy with notebooks. In front of the desk on the floor sit a CD cases. One small contains software. The other bigger is full of DVDs. Moving around the room is another crate bookcase. A large book of quotations sits in the crate. As well as blank CDs, two containers of tea and two hard drives. On top of the crate is a three-drawer organizer. Notepads in top drawer. Incense in the middle. The bottom contains push pins, pens and paper clips.
On top of the drawers is a Hello Kitty toaster and a hand sanitizer. Next to this is a computer sitting on a box. And the closet.
Passed the closet is a second large three-drawer storage unit. In the top are hats and belts. Random clothes in the middle. And more white shirts at the bottom. A calendar hangs from the closet door, September.
Between the drawers and the bed is where the cat eats. And drinks.
The hardwood floor is strewn with today’s clothes. Cat toys are here and there and it needs to be swept.
I started the day off cooking. Got the hot case filled, made some chickens and pizza. I was happy about getting pizza out because I have spaced on it the last couple times I was cooking in the deli. I noticed when you put things on discount they sell off fast and I end up throwing out less food. Less waste and more money for the store.
At two another person came in and also was cooking in the deli. Which really there didn’t need to be two people. So after a while I talked to the manager and got sent somewhere else. I helped the meat manager do some inventory preparation. I had to return to the deli at 5 to cover my co-workers lunch. During the time I was gone, he had done basically nothing in terms of cooking. He had put out some food I had started and discounted a few items. If I hadn’t gotten cooking right away, the hot case would have been empty at 6 p.m. Normally we stop cooking at 5 p.m. because there should be enough food ready to last until close.
It was a good day. I am tired. My Aria scale died today. If I don’t hear back from the company tomorrow via email, I will probably just buy another one. It lasted me a good three years almost, so I guess I should be happy.
It is late and I should be getting to bed soon. Today was a produce day. I spent my whole shift working salads and cut fruit from the back stock to the floor. I cleared out almost 90 percent of the back stock. I also worked some bananas and potatoes. It was a boring day, and I am going to sleep now.
Tomorrow I work at 9 a.m. I need to do more reading than I have lately. I did get some reading of A Course in Miracles during my lunch break. Oh yeah, I have to cut time tomorrow and the next day too.
From Ahawhnee we moved back to our great-aunt’s for the last time. It was just me and my sister.
What I remember most we had some friends. Where they came from and where they went I am unsure. But they would come to the property and play a game of hide and seek. We played it at night. It started off simple enough. But soon we learned how easy it was to hide in simple shadows. And to move in shadows.
Eventually we didn’t really hide so much as move around and try to avoid being caught. And we played it on much of the 13 acres. I have a clear memory of going down near the river. And my sister once encountered a pack of coyotes, which ran away.
But I still spent a good deal of time alone. This is when I took the long trip up the river and found the canyon. Maybe it wasn’t a canyon, but to us it was grand. On either side of the river was some high rocks. The river was narrow. And in some parts much deeper than near where we lived.
It was a period of transition. When I started school in Coarsegold I was popular. I hadn’t been back at the school since before my brother was born, in the second grade. Most of the students were new to me. Except the girl who broke my arm was still at the school.
Maybe I wasn’t popular. What does the word even mean? But I was the center of attention. At the time there was no difference in my mind. But looking back as an older and wiser person, there is a difference.
The other kids at school started talking me into doing embarrassing things for attention. Things I would rather no discuss in detail. But, I had no self-esteem. And I would do anything for the vague idea of acceptance or approval. Or just for attention good or bad. I wasn’t a very strong person. And I didn’t have much of a sense of myself, or my own self worth.
It was also the transition of puberty. Which created some touchy changes in my life.
Another memory from this time was of myself talking back to my great-aunt. She had told me something, I don’t even remember what she had said. But I wanted to feel like I had some power, and it was easy to be mean to her because I knew she wouldn’t respond.
At the time a TV show was popular. The show was Bosom Buddies. The theme song was defiant, and I wanted to be defiant so I told her:
“I don’t care what you say anymore, this is my life”
This is when I discovered Madonna and became a fan. I would sometimes find a Walkman and listen to the radio. It was pop music. Music which my great-aunt felt was evil. She told a story of the devil going to church. Someone asked the devil, why are you here where we worship God. His reply was they were worshiping him with their music.
And I walked away. She never mentioned it, and she probably understood me more than I did myself at the time. But, it was immature to say the least.
But it is a hard time isn’t it, becoming a non-child. But you still have years before you become an adult. You aren’t even a teenager.
It is during this time I think I first really started to feel alone the most. Not just alone in the singular sense of the word. But alone in the sense of not being understood. Alone in the feeling of people not being aware of me. My struggles, my general being.
This was the last school I attended, aside from going to high school. So my school memories of the time probably over lap with the next chapter. The last move we made was the next house.
There was a girl named Pepper. Yeah, who names their kid Pepper. But I thought she was hot. I wanted to get to know Pepper better, and I wrote her a note and I put pepper in the note. She never responded. Once I picked her some wild flowers. Other kids laughed, and one later pulled some weeds out of the ground and gave them to her. These things feel bad at the time. I don’t know how she felt about me. But we never even became friends. There were no friends in school.
This was also the time period when I was not chosen for a team sport. In PE the two popular kids would be the team captains. They would then choose players one at a time until everyone was on a team. But this time the count was odd. Neither team wanted me. Then they both said I should be on the other team. So I left. These things feel really bad a the time.
Of course it is just school. And the paid goes away over time. We grow up and we learn to value ourselves. We learn to understand the kids are wrong.
There was a girl who gave me a flower one day. I don’t recall her name. It stayed in a vase by my bed for a long time. Then someone else threw it away one day.
This was a short transition. We moved to Hilda’s at the start of summer and moved to our own house during my sixth grade year. The exciting factor was it was a house we owned. Well Mother was making payments to the bank.