by Julie Pham
It didn’t hit me that the office where my parents ran a Vietnamese-language newspaper for decades was really closed until I noticed I still have a key on my chain that I no longer use.
My younger brother and I had been preparing for the shutdown of the office since July. On weekends, we’d sift through 36 years of existence packed into 1050 square feet. Binders of old invoices and advertising orders, stacks of newspapers and Vietnamese music CDs were stuffed inside the drawers of executive desks made of cheap wood with “mahogany” veneer, hefty enough to withstand the bulky monitors and desktops of the 1990s. The stuff stored there wasn’t just work-related. My brothers and I were also guilty of leaving our odd pieces of clothing, sporting equipment, and high school yearbooks at the office.
The adrenaline needed to constantly sift, pack, and then haul to the dump fueled me just enough to get through the over three tons of trash. When we were done, I had no energy left to feel sad.Continue reading OPINION: What Ends During the Pandemic Starts Again Somewhere Else