tonight i came home from the bookstore, to my yard alight with dozens of lightning bugs. it was just the bright and dreamy shot of happiness i needed. it was a bit of a sad night up to that point. i have often mentioned my bookstore job. the evening rides home. walking through darkened streets after shutting the shop up for the night. it's been a lovely part of my life for the past 6 years. and tonight i did all those things for the last time.
we had a special store. it blended the mega bookstore with downtown local flavor perfectly. i worked a couple nights a week. and i would come home jacked, full of the energy of good people. the customers. my co-workers. the beautiful atmosphere. all of it combined to be something i could never let go of, even when it seemed my life couldn't take another commitment, i wouldn't let myself think of life without the bookstore.
it's white fresh walls covered in books. the graceful staircase. the hum of voices. the light and quick conversations with customers. and the wonderful energy of the books weaving through it all. but all of this was not enough to keep it's doors open. the flow of money and customers declined to the point that a few months ago we were told that the store would close at the end of june. and the time has arrived.
i haven't spoken to a single person who doesn't feel that this store closing is a tragedy of sorts for our town. but tonight i soaked up every moment of being there for the last time. i enjoyed every second.
and i had the good moments blended with the parts that weren't my favorite. it turned out my last night was a little microcosm of my entire tenure there. many of my favorite customers saying good bye. the dogs who always run behind the cash desk looking for treats. kids coming in after school (and today just happened to be the last day of school as well) right down to the local b-movie actress who demands special treatment and discounts. it was the perfect last night, drifting through the store saying goodbye. many shelves are already empty. a dozen empty tables pushed together and filling a large section upstairs. bare and echoey. we are all saying goodbye, feeling the shuffle of change as it does what it must.
i feel like quilts are alive. they reflect all the little joys that make life special. they emanate love and warmth. the quilts i make blend a grandmother's ideals with a fresh youthful flair. there is a nostalgia for seasons past combined with hopefulness for a bright full future. you can find me online at www.chasinglightningbugs.com