Tag Archives: Walmart

If Only…

If only I hadn’t gone to the job fair. I’d recently moved to Vancouver and needed a job. At the job fair I met Tye. And we talked about working at Walmart. Three years later I am doing good at Walmart. But if…

If only I hadn’t had the crazy roommate move in with me. I thought having a roommate would help. But she was crazy. Thought I worked for the police. Ate all my food. And then wanted to have sex with me. Craziest thing of all really. But then I wouldn’t have moved to Vancouver.

If only the weather hadn’t been so cold in the spring. If only the workplace hadn’t been so cold. And then so loud. If only I hadn’t had a great friend in Vancouver.

If only I hadn’t stayed in touch with Michelle. We met years ago. And had been close ever since. She’s been an amazing friend. And I’ve been a wandering fool. If only she hadn’t stayed friends with me all those years. I wouldn’t have had the option to move to Vancouver.

If only I hadn’t met her at Burgerville. It wasn’t a place either us belonged at the time. But we were there for a short time together. We got to know each other. Became friends and became close. If only when she asked to be my friend I had said, “no.” It would have been a sad mistake. But it could have happened.

If only I hadn’t gotten fired from the deli downtown. I worked for a Korean couple who barked at me. The man said women were trouble. The woman said I made her feel stupid. But I worked and worked. Coming in late every day. I didn’t know the clock was set fast. If they hadn’t fired me one dark day I wouldn’t have gone to Burgerville. And I would never have met my best friend: Michelle.

If only in the wet of winter I hadn’t moved to Portland. Starting out in the city wasn’t easy. I had to really work hard and rent cheap places. When I could rent any place. I had at one point planned on moving to Seattle with a woman. But it didn’t work out and I landed in Portland. Why Portland, I didn’t even know the place. But I knew, M, the girl hated the place. And it was close enough for me to afford a ticket on the bus. If only she hadn’t hated Portland. If only I could have afforded to move to Austin. If only I would have moved to another town.

If only I had stayed a week longer. I had been camping by the river. And the night I left the water flooded my tent. A couple years later I went back and found it. It was under a deep layer of mud. I’d never thought the river could flood. If only I had stayed another night. It might have been my last.

I had met M on a lonely night in San Francisco. I had turned while walking to talk to a friend behind me. But bumped into M. She was looking for someone for talking. I sat down and we talked for hours. We blew smoke bubbles. My heart was feeling light like a bubble. If only I hadn’t bumped into the strange girl. If only I hadn’t fallen in love. If only the night was just the night. But we stayed together for weeks. And then later went on a long trip. If only we hadn’t been so close. I would never have made plans to move to Seattle. I would never have moved to Portland. If only on one night in San Francisco I was walking on the other side of the street.

She had left home to see her favorite poet. Allen Ginsberg, was alive when she when she left Seattle. But he was dead when she got to San Francisco. If only she had loved a different poet. If only she hadn’t been feeling lonely. If only she had never left home. There are so many unknown if only’s in her story. If only her family had been closer.

If only I hadn’t been cruising around the Bay Area. If only I’d never started on my experimental life. I left college to be on the road for a while. But I never left the Bay Area until I met M. If only I had never met her. If only I had stayed in school I would have a totally different career. But there had been a longing in my heart for something different. If only I had been happier with my life choices. If only I had ignored the call of the wild.

If only I hadn’t been in San Francisco. If only I hadn’t met M. If only I hadn’t moved to Portland. If only I hadn’t worked at Burgerville. If only I hadn’t met Michelle. If only I hadn’t moved back after many years. If only I hadn’t gotten a job at Walmart. If only so many more things I can’t count or recall. And a few I am not even aware of right now. I wouldn’t be here writing this, and you wouldn’t be here reading it.

I for one am happy all the “if onlys” worked out the way they did.

My Story as told by Lilith

This isn’t me. Or rather it isn’t who you think. I’m Lilith. The unseen twin of our author.
Growing up we used to spend a lot of time together. It was him and I. On long walks we got to know each other. No one else ever knew me. No one at all. The rest of the family didn’t understand.

Going to school was hard. It tore us apart. He was often mocked by other kids. And it hurt me to see. All I wanted was to get back at those kids. But I couldn’t. And he wouldn’t. So I had to watch. Knowing it hurt him, made it worse. Did anyone pay attention to him like me.

In the sixth grade he was dying for attention. I saw him do things he shouldn’t have for others. I wanted to stop him. Tell him to love himself. But I didn’t love myself. I did love him. And I felt like he loved me. We always would have each other. And I always stayed with him.

In high school we would eat together. Just the two of us. His other sister has her own friends. So we had each other. And it was all we needed.

And I went to college with him. At first it was like he didn’t need me anymore. Though we were always together. But then we got closer and closer. I know the tart Harmony broke his heart. And I know it was his fault. And yes it still hurt to watch. I wish I could have told him it was coming. But would he have listened. He listens to me more now.

On the streets we kept each other warm. Closer than ever. When M came around, I was still there. She was someone who was good for him. And I loved her as much as he loved her. She made him happy. And this made me happy. We weren’t as close. But I preferred it to his being so sad all the time. Sad and alone.

But M also broke his heart. And mine to be honest. I trusted her with my best friend. He took it hard. It was hard to comfort him. Over time he healed. He met Heather, and I never trusted her. But, she made his life a little better. Until she didn’t.

We had moved to Portland. He had a job he enjoyed. And was making a decent enough income to support us. His first place was a dump. I hate dogs, so I hated the house. Dogs in and out and messing on the floor. In the next house his roommate was crazy. I liked him, but never trusted him. Soon we moved again. Then we traveled.

Rainbow Gatherings are my favorite. And the one in Pennsylvania was grand. We played. We read. We ate and slept. It was an adventure. An adventure which lead to another adventure. Meeting Laura, Pam and Shaylyn. Then a couple months later moving in with Shaylyn and Pam in Upstate New York. There was something I liked about Ogdensburg.

Problems caused us to move again. And again. Then to live alone. It was just him and I again. We still had each other. We would always have each other. He had some friends for a while. But they drifted away and we spent our time together.

We moved back to California. Went to another great gathering. And fell in love with Boulder. I think I loved it even more then he. It was my idea to name the kissing bridge. Maybe someday we can kiss someone on the bridge. He started talking to M again. And fell in love again.

His plans were to move back to Portland. There was another girl he liked and was moving with to Portland. But they didn’t work out and he fell for M hard. Even harder than last time. I accepted her. But I couldn’t love her again. And I couldn’t trust her again. They broke up. She told him on the answering machine she was pregnant. And I feared for him. There was no baby in the end. He never shared much about his feelings.

We moved back to California. Went to a gathering. Found a great job working in the High Sierras. I loved it up there in those mountains. And I could live up there forever. If only he would allow us to leave the city. The next stop was Yosemite. Which I also loved, but not as much. He was happy in Yosemite too. But then he felt like it was too small. After saving money he got us out of there, to Stockton. I hated Stockton.

And I never saw him. Work, work and school. All the time. No time for himself and no time for me.

Things slowed down when he moved to Arcata. I loved hiking in the forest. And he enjoyed it too. The college wasn’t hard for him. Working still took a lot of time. The first year it was a job he loved. Until they fired him. And he hasn’t ever loved a job in the same way since. Well, until Walmart. The next job he worked was at CVS.

Then we moved away to Wyoming. What an amazing place to live. Snow and cold. Mountains and open plains. Take me home to Wyoming. This is where I would choose for us to live. But the job let him go. We wondered around for a while. Not lost, but seeking. And landed back in Arcata.

There he fell again. He doesn’t fall often. But when he does it is hard. I liked this girl. And I thought we could be friends. But it isn’t as easy for me as it is for him. And it really isn’t easy for him. They were close. Seemed like there was so much they had in common. And I started to believe she loved and cared about him. Maybe I could lose him to her, but then she tore his heart in two. This was a dark moment for him.

But we still had each other. We still held on to each other. In those days he hung on to me closer than ever. We only had each other. His friends didn’t really know his feelings like me.

We moved to Colorado. And Nebraska. Then Texas. Those states were hard for both of us. We were both alone. And only had each other. It was worse than high school.

But now we live in Vancouver. He has a job he loves. Working at Walmart. The sad part is the pay is not enough. I want him to do better for himself. I encourage him to seek another job. And he does, but you can tell his heart isn’t in finding something new. He wants to get promoted. But I don’t trust his managers to see him for the asset his is to them.

We shall see.