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THE REAL FORKS: The Store

 

By Christy Rasmussen-Ford


I remember my dad once saying that “back in the day” (always with the back in the day), everyone used to know everyone in Forks.

 

“It’s not like that anymore,” he says.

 

It’s not like that because we have become a bustling, growing, huge town with a population of 3,250 residents. Well, I suppose my family of four brought the grand total to 3,254!

 

That’s a crazy high amount of people.

 

It’s not the small town that he grew up in anymore.

 

Nope.

 

The town is just spiraling out of control with residents.

 

Well, my trips to the store beg to differ from his interpretation of people not knowing people anymore.

 

I can go to the store for one thing and be gone over an hour.

 

This isn’t due to my forgetfulness either. Sure, I may waste 15 minutes of that time wandering the aisles and trying to remember what I came in for, but the remaining time is spent talking to the multiple residents that I happen to know.

 

It starts in the parking lot.

 

Someone inevitably is walking to their car and stops to chat as I’m getting the kids out.

 

I’m there for a good 10 minutes until the visitor remembers that they have ice cream and need to get home. It’s probably more like milkshake by now, but that’s the risk you take when shopping in Forks.

 

Then, I barely make it inside the doors and run into someone else I know.

 

We chat away, becoming the annoying people blocking the door whom we cuss out under our breath when it’s not us.

 

The visitor then realizes that they too are about to have melted ice cream.

 

“See you around!”

 

Then I’m off to do my shopping.

 

Three to four chats later in the aisles with random customers that I know brings the grand total of time spent in the store to 45 minutes, still without making it to the check-out line.

 

The check-out line brings its own little time-wasting properties.

 

There are people in line in front and behind to catch up with as well as the cashier, cashiers of other lines, people walking by who already have paid, people just walking in, even the service center people.

 

One hour after pulling into the parking lot, I am now on my way out of the store when it becomes my turn to chat with people on my way out and in the parking lot.

 

Then I remember my ice cream and hurry home.

 

Heaven help me if I remember in the parking lot that I forgot something. That just starts the process over again … and my groceries have gone from ice cream to milkshake to milk.

 

Total spent in the store: 1 hour, 15 minutes.

 

Total time spent doing what I came in for: 15 minutes

 

I think the math here shows that maybe, just maybe, everyone still knows everyone here.

 

Or maybe I just know everyone.

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