He went into the memory drawer, again, and already forgot why he opened it. Such clutter. Memories, social security number, telephone numbers. Old street addresses and girl friends' names. He wouldn’t use those again. Should toss them.
No tossing matter from the memory drawer. In there was what he needed if he could remember what he sought. The memory drawer didn’t hold that memory although he did see that he planned to get a sandwich at that new sandwich shop, what was the name of that place? Where was it? He'd just walked past it the other day.... Rummaging through the memory drawer’s contents, he saw an unused exercise schedule and found his wife’s car needed gas. The plans for making hotel reservations had shimmied down between retirement planning, preparations for last week’s guests, and articles he meant to read about Windows 10. Pulling out past summers and the movie he’d seen last week, he discovered a forgotten bolt, saw his cousin’s birthday was last Tuesday and medicine for the cat needed ordered. There was that book that he’d bought and set aside…which he’d seen recently….
He picked through the memory drawer’s pieces, searching for where he’d seen that book. Wasn't it red...with gold letters? Or blue? It’d had been so recently…. What had he been doing? Walking around, doing something. Dusting? Dressing? Looking for the cat or another book? No, it was while looking for the camera, wasn’t it? It had been hot, either in the late morning or the early afternoon...and he'd been alone. So. That had been either Wednesday or Thursday, hadn’t it? No, Tuesday, yes, Tuesday’s memory suddenly sparkled from the memory’s drawer murk. Tuesday, he’d been readying the house for guests and was cleaning the master shower. Then the phone rang . Yes. He’d gone in there to see who was calling. It was for his wife – he saw the memory and recalled, Jill, yes – so he’d let it go to memory – he laughed at his faux pas, correcting, he’d let it go to answering machine. Then he went to the back door….
Dragging out Tuesday’s memory, he left the memory drawer open and retraced Tuesday’s activities through the house. The memory was already fading, reducing the paths to bewildering charcoal smudges. Yes, he’d gone into the living room, not while cleaning the bath and checking the phone but while dusting the living room furniture. Aha. Triumph seizing him, he hastened into the living room, easily circumnavigating furniture and piles of books, discovering a dust rag left beside the stereo, which he’d not finished dusting, until the forgotten book was discovered. Memories of other books languishing in the piles were recovered. He’d not even seen them in the drawer but here they were. He must have wanted to read them. Yes, that one had been a gift.
While enroute to the other room, he surrendered to a cat's begging and fed the starving animal, leaving the book in the laundry room beside the cat food, fortunately remembering it right after he stepped from the room. Returning to his home office, he sat down and glanced at his computer screen. Oh, that’s right, he’d been about to do something. Setting the book aside on a pile of newspapers and magazines, he glanced at a postcard beside the mouse pad on his desk – he’d meant to answer that but a week had already expired – and frowned at the computer’s screen. What he’d been about to do would not come. Sighing, he reached for the memory drawer.
His frown deepened.
Didn’t he leave that open?
Gingerly he drew the drawer out. Sliding crookedly, it stuck, requiring a stiffer tug. Everything almost flew out. He stared down at the collection.
What was he looking for again?