Personal Earthquakes

For Memorial Day.

Gail Chumbley

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My mother worked for the US Postal Service. She went to work in the early sixties, when we were still in grade school and stayed on until her retirement at age sixty five. The woman had four kids and a house, and a yard, and she probably was pretty overwhelmed—something I now understand. To get an extra pair of hands my parents decided to house a girl each term who attended a business school in Spokane call Kinman Business School. God knows what kind of credential awaited these secretaries-in-training after completion, but these girls ended up learning shorthand and office skills like that.

The first girl who lived with us stayed in the second bedroom off the hall. I think her name was Corrine. I can’t remember exactly because it was around 1965 or 1966, and we were pretty young. Corrine was from Alaska, and I remember she was part…

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