Thursday, January 22, 2009


The bank at Rosewood turned grocery store turned living quarters is not a mystery. If anyone has been through the village of late, one can see this once prominent brown stucco building has fallen into disrepair. Old Trunks last trip viewed a mixed breed dog resting on the steps with its head peering out through a whole in the wall.

What do we know about this building? We know it became a store after the bank failed. For a few decades, it was a place for simple notions, candy, and soda.

It was there for the youth of Rosewood to gather.

It was there when Harry, Lillian, and Bruce as well as my parents and my brother rented it as a domicile.

It was there when Cliff Rye who got grape soda for his wife Mel. Mel had asked the owner to tell her the kinds of soda that was stock. The owner had previously had a stroke and could not talk plainly. Cliff said, "She'll have grape." Realize, of course, that Mel hated grape soda!

It was there for the Anderson children.

It was there for people who drove through to buy over priced gas to 'help out the cause'.

In one of my lives, it was available for rent, whether it be a store or living quarters, or both.

The store was separated from the rest of the building by eight foot walls on twelve foot ceilings. How was it heated? Did it have a bathroom? Did it have running water?

The idea was to bring the store back to its former business by selling groceries and feeding the Soo Line Railroad employees pie and coffee in the afternoon. The only vision I had was Lloyd sitting at a table in the store eating brownies.

Someone else had the rest of the vision and knew the details. And so, as a clerk in a market in Thief River Falls, he began to purchase items on sale with the idea of mark up. What had shelf life? YELLOW CAKE MIX

This is, after all, the case of the yellow cake mix. NOT A case of yellow cake mix. Of all the kinds available at that era, why yellow? How many yellow cake mixes have your made? Me? None. I like yellow cake with chocolate frosting as well as Mel liked grape soda.

Well, the renting of the store fell through. Someone else had put in their claim first.

In an 800 mile move south, that cake mix came along. The cake mix moved from apartment to house to apartment. For those of you who are pinched for storage, you will appreciate the cake mix being stored in the bedroom closet because there was no room in the kitchen, whether it be the pantry or the cupboards.

Actually, being short on storage IS a problem for most of us. Without an attic in the garage, where would we put the stuff we don't use and don't want to toss? Where do people put bicycles? Christmas decorations? Treasures from the past? Sets of hand me down dishes and silverware?Junkque!?

Is the attic in the garage a out of sight place where we deal with the items later? What are we ever going to do with 300 feet of Christmas lights stored in a huge orange pumpkin? There are boxes of bric-a-brac from our mother's houses. What is in those boxes?

Who decides what is trash and what is treasure? What if all of it was gone through and re-organized? Would that at least let us know what is there? Granted, Easter and Halloween is separated; the Christmas crates are downstairs along the back wall. There are crates upon crates of silk flowers, yet, rather than go out on a sub zero day for just the right posie, it seems easier to just replace them. Shame on me. Or to to the basement, where another mass of silks appear to be growning, no, I didn't mean growing.

But it is not the season for iris or daisies or sunflowers. It is the season for velvet roses with pretend snow. Can we skip ahead to tulips? Shouldn't these crates be marked winter, summer, spring, and fall? Doesn't that seem like a good idea to you? How about storing major holidays by themselves including silks? When is it warm enough to do this? Yes, fishing season.

Sounds like Old Trunks as a case of the yellow cake mix.

What is your call?


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