The Nearly Lost Notebook

For 14 years, I've carried a notebook. I've never lost one. Until last night.

Jodie and I were at the grocery store, and I was using my moleskine as a brace for our grocery list, setting the paper on it as we checked off item after item. At some point I set down notebook and list, presumably to grab some grocery something or other, but when I was done, the list was the only thing I picked up.

It's hard to say how much timed passed between the loss and the noticing of the loss, but the rest of the grocery trip was a practice in not melting down.

My notebooks are very personal, constant companions, containing everything from dreams and dark thoughts, to-do lists and a weekly calendar.

I traced my steps — bulk foods, produce; a likely spot near the spices turned up nada, as did a spot in front of the cabbages. No moleskine.

Luckily, just that evening I had finished typing up all the pages in it so far, so the loss was not as acute. If that content — thoughts on the novel, notes from a meeting with our wedding photographer, ideas for a company asking for some assistance with setting up a blog — had been lost, and hadn't been typed, I would've been damn near inconsolable, which is not a pretty sight.

We checked with staff, but no one had heard of a small black notebook being turned in. Resigned, Jodie and I finished our shopping. On the way to checkout, I thought I'd check once more. Over at the produce, two women were pushing a buggy.

"Go ask them," I thought.

"Excuse me," I said, "but did you happen to see a small black notebook?"

Their faces lit up. "We did! We were going to give it to the cashier when we checked out!" one said, as she reached into the buggy and handed me my small black moleskine.

After many thanks, I joined back up with Jodie and showed her the restored treasure.

But still — thank goodness I'd typed those notes. Here's to staying on top of typing up what's been scribbled.

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