The Yearbook Office
Writings on staying alive

Day 72

Without access to the island I find myself without income. First thing after waking up, I head to the Post Office to check the balance in my savings. Running the numbers I find I have enough to make payroll for about two weeks, but only if I skip my mortgage payments. Head back home to lie down and try to figure a way out of this mess.

Day 75

Spent the better part of today walking through the Kona Village museum. I had to sneak past the storefront of Nook's Homes when no one was looking, but I have the sinking suspicion that those beady eyes caught me anyway.

Despite having lived here for over two months I realized I had never visited the museum other than to drop off fossils I had dug up. It always seemed odd that near pristine dinosaur fossils would surface almost daily but the museum curator never seemed to question it, so I chalked it up to yet another weird thing about Kona Village.

But since I hired Hamphrey to be the village fossil excavator, the dinosaur wing of the museum has filled in nicely. I spend hours looking at the skeletons. These were such majestic creatures, what could have happened to them? They ruled the world and now they were just a bunch of bones, strung together with wire.

Day 77

Despite having paid a premium for my furniture deliveries, I had not touched them until today. Instead they sat in my front room, in their giant wooden crates, at first a reward for my hard work and later a token of my excess and stupidity. But today that was going to change. Using my shovel, I pried open the crates and took to rearranging everything.

Not wanting to waste any Bells, I carried the entire bedroom set upstairs to my bedroom on my own. Afterwards I laid on the floor on my modern rug, sweat dripping from my forehead, feeling a strong sense of accomplishment. I might not have a lot going for me, but at least I could do thia.

Day 81

Put on the wetsuit I got from the island (before they cut me off, those ingrateful curs) and went to float out in the ocean. Laying on my back, letting the waves carry me I felt at peace for the first time since that fateful day on the dock.

I think back to what Kapp'n said to me, replaying the conversation over and over again in my head. I was just taking advantage of a valuable resource that he had to know existed. Surely if it was not me, someone else would have exploited it! Really, I was doing him a favor by showing him the Bell mine he was living on top of. Maybe if he stopped singing his dumb songs and picked up a net he could make something for his family, like I tried to.

Day 85

Ran into Rudy while I was walking around the peach orchard, or well, he ran into me. I could tell he had been looking for me, he had a flustered look on his face, and he quickly spat out, "Hey! Isabelle says she can't pay me. The Village ain't got no money no more."

"That can't be right! I will take care of this right away, I swear" I quickly spit out, hoping he does not notice the color draining from my face. Without hesitating I turn around and run to the Post Office where I withdraw the last of my savings. Then I rush over to Town Hall and burst through the door so quick it makes Isabelle jump in her seat.

"Isabelle! I thought I told you to let me know when we were not going to make payroll. The villagers cannot know that we won't be able to keep paying them salaries!" I scream at her.

"Oh, mayor! I have been trying to get in touch with you for days but you have not been answering your mail. Yes, we were unable to make payroll yesterday," Isabelle says, nervously twitching her hands.

"Here!" I say, handing over the sack of Bells, "Hopefully this will last you a few more days."

Before she can even open it I am out the door and walking home hoping a good idea will strike me before I get there.

No such luck, though I do find my mailbox ready to burst with mail. Taking it inside, I find the letters from Isabelle where she warns about the lack of funds to pay the villagers in increasing distress. More troubling are the collection notices from Nook's Homes, filled with words like "foreclosure" and "repossession". Walking into the den I throw the pile of mail into the fireplace.

Day 89

I wake up to find Tom Nook and his two sons standing around my bed. Nook is holding a golden shovel in his hands.

"You have missed too many of your mortgage payments, I am giving you one day to repay your loan or else I am foreclosing on you," he says.

"But that is over a million bells! You know that is impossible!" I say.

"Should have thought of that when you took out that loan. Thought you could cut it with the big boys but not such a high roller now, are we?"

I look up into his cold, dead eyes as fear paralyzes my body.

"This is your warning, you will not get another one" he says as he lifts the shovel and slams it down on the Polka Dot lamp next to my bed, shattering it into a thousand pieces.

"Timmy, Tommy. Let's make like a tree," Nook says to his sons as they file out. I stare up at the ceiling, wondering how I am going to get myself out of this mess. Without access to the island I have no clue how I can make that much money in a day. I lay there for hours until I realize that inaction is not going to help and I have to try at least.

Scouring the village, I shake every tree and harvest the fruit. As I walk into Re-Tail with my overflowing baskets Reese gives me a concerned look.

"That is a lot of fruit you have there," she says.

"Everything in the village I could find."

"But that fruit belongs to everyone!" she cries, clearly upset wtih me.

"No it belongs to me, I am the mayor after all."

"Are you sure you want to do this, Mayor?" she asks me.

"I have no choice. Nook is dropping the hammer on me. Please?" I weakly reply.

"Okay, let me tally this up," she sighs as she starts counting the fruit. I hold my breath as she picks each peach, cherry and coconut out of the basket, inspecting the skin and ripeness. When she is done she checks her numbers one more time and in a somber tone says, "8,420 bells."

"Are you sure?"

"I am not counting it again. You know fruit is not that valuable here. You knew this was going to happen Mayor."

I storm out and in a rage smash the rock in front of Re-Tail with my shovel. It makes a noise and a sack of bells pops out. I hit the rock again and again but the trick only happens the once. After opening the bag and counting out 3000 bells, I fall to my knees and yell.