Julia stood in the same spot she always came to when she wanted to disappear.

The young adult stacks were in the far corner of the upstairs level. It was the quietest section of the store and easy to hide there. Usually.

She stared at the shelf in front of her, looking at the authors’ last names.

R, S, T…

I should be writing my newsletter right now. Not stuck here re-shelving books. I’m never going to get my business off the ground, if I can’t get the flipping marketing done.

Julie’s frustration was especially acute tonight. Her dad passed away a year ago yesterday. And she still floundered between her part-time job at Powell’s and the coaching business she’d started before he died.

It’d been okay that things were moving slowly six months ago. That was normal, right? But she’d hoped things would’ve taken off by now. I don’t think I can stay on this hamster wheel much longer.

She’d told everyone who’d listen that she was available to help them figure out their way through major life transitions.

When they asked her what kind of work she did, she always made sure she said, “I work with women who are feeling stuck and don’t know how to move forward.”

Most of the time, she’d get either a sympathetic look that seemed to say, “Oh, honey. It’s just a phase. You’ll grow out of it.” Or a blank stare. Neither of which were helpful.

This whole starting-a-business-thing felt like a jigsaw puzzle. One that was missing a few crucial pieces. Like they’d fallen on the floor and been kicked under the couch without her noticing.

If I quit this job, I’d have enough time to work on building this business. There are just WAY too many things to do!

The idea of having 15 extra hours each week to work on her marketing seemed like THE ANSWER. I’d finally be able to go to all those networking events. And blog. And fix my website. And, and…

“Hey, Julia. There you are.” Nick always seemed to know where to find her.

“There was a weird lady downstairs looking for you. She asked me to give you this.” Nick handed her a square white envelope.

It was hand-addressed.


She turned it over a few times, curious as to who would’ve written it. And why.

She looked at Nick and squinted. “What did she look like? The woman who gave you this?”

“Um…sort of a cross between a street musician and a grandma. She had long gray dreadlocks and she had on one of those white chef outfits. Do you know her?”

Julia rubbed her forehead. “No. But let’s see what she has to say.”

Dear Julia,

We don’t know each other (yet) but a friend of yours mentioned you were a life coach. I may have a potential client or two I can connect you with.

Would you be available to meet with them next week? I’ve invited them to join us for tea at 3:30 this coming Thursday. Please come. We’ll be at Story Bistro: 404 West Burnside.


Yolanda Del Corazon

Julia read the note three times before she folded it and tucked it back into it’s envelope.

Now, what was THIS about? 


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