May 3, 2013  |  Journal

Another day, another chapter, and what of myself? Just a few sentiments going through my head late that afternoon, as I reached for an old shoebox collection of near mint classic James Bond paperback novels, from the hands of an older gentleman who had decided to sell after seeming to have little use for them. Each book marked with a red sticker reading “99 cents”. Ian Fleming would be rolling over in his grave. Was that all his words are worth? In a world where we distinguish the well-off, well-dressed, but what of the well-versed? “Well… I could use a few new books to read”, speaking to the gentleman as I pulled from my pocket a crumpled-looking Andrew Jackson, “and don’t worry I’ll make the change.”

Casino Royale. Thunderball. You Only Live Twice. The Man With the Golden Gun. Just a few of the spoils that lay within that cardboard treasure chest. It was nearly evening by the end of my purchase, shoebox tucked under my arm, and yet my mind was not prepared to leave. Placing my new book collection onto the seat of the car, I decided to go for a walk down Main Street, taking along with me the 1962 novel, The Spy Who Loved Me. Stepping onto the sidewalk, eyes looking up at the Son, the sun glaring back down, there were still a few good hours of light left. I peeled back the first page at its frail brown edges, as my eyes and legs both began to move. Steps turned into to feet, which passed several yards lined with the same proverbial white

picket fence. “And miles to go before I sleep”, as I continued reading, with each new page more captivating than the former. I found myself slowly immersing into the world of fictional espionage, eyes only looking up to acknowledge a few landmarks, reminding myself of the distance traveled. Like the illustrious California palm trees swaying in the lukewarm breeze, the Opel GT in blue metallic looking as if it hadn’t moved from that spot outside Ruben’s Auto shop since the 60′s, and the Original Mike’s that felt like it had been there just as long. It wasn’t until several pages later that I began to notice I had gone far enough. Closing the book I turned around in full view of the sun beginning to set on another day, another chapter, in the retro life.



Jeffery Tang

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