This Is A Story About Loss
October 21, 2015 8:27 AM   Subscribe

A woman who suddenly lost her best friend in a car crash shops at a store filled with unclaimed airport luggage. "When I first looked at [The Unclaimed Baggage Center]'s website months ago, I felt that same twinge of, 'It's a store full of lost stuff? That sucks.' I figured I would write a quirky piece about a kooky store, to compensate for the inherent sadness. But my world changed this summer, and now I'm here in Alabama, and the idea of losing stuff on an airplane feels decidedly less heavy."
posted by Amberlyza (7 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
I would like to go there and buy a suitcase and everything to fill it for a trip. Then travel with only that suitcase full of only that stuff until the airlines loses it or I die, whichever comes first.
posted by Don Pepino at 9:43 AM on October 21, 2015 [3 favorites]

None of us ever imagined we'd tattoo ourselves... I have a wireframe jewel on my wrist, for my Jewels. When I'm at my lowest, when it's a down day, my husband reminds me, "Get your power from your gemstone." It works. It's not lost on me how this is one totem that, barring some insane accident that ends with me losing my right arm, I can never lose.
A beautiful, painful story. So much love, sadness, and devotion in every word. Thanks very much for the post.
posted by divined by radio at 10:21 AM on October 21, 2015 [2 favorites]

I enjoyed this article earlier today and thought about sharing it on here. This paragraph, specifically the last sentence, really struck me as gorgeously articulated.

I told the 600 people that gathered for her memorial that, "Our bond over the past 26 years is the most steadfast thing I know and ever will know." I couldn't bring myself to say "was." Because saying that "our bond was," or "Julia was" felt, and feels, so wrong. I hate that the only way I can now say "Julia is," in present tense, is to say that Julia is gone.
posted by staccato signals of constant information at 10:40 AM on October 21, 2015 [3 favorites]

Thanks for sharing this contemplative article. Loss is a difficult concept to convey one's depth-of-experience to another person, and she has done it with grace.
posted by Halo in reverse at 12:02 PM on October 21, 2015

Here, in no particular order, are some of the weirder objects Unclaimed Baggage has recovered over the years:

But only some. No mention of Hoggle.
posted by radwolf76 at 1:00 PM on October 21, 2015 [2 favorites]

I loved this. I am now desperate to visit this store; I'm not much of a shopper but I love weird, quirky independent businesses of all kinds. (Also, people have some shockingly bad taste in jewellery.)
posted by DarlingBri at 3:32 PM on October 21, 2015

Ctrl-F "Philip K. Dick" + "head"

no hits. welp, doesn't hurt to check.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 1:46 PM on October 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

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