Monday, February 2, 2009

A Letter in the Mail

I got a letter in the mail on Saturday, a letter from my grandson. He's five, and very sweet. Included with it is a letter from his Mama, my daughter D. Getting that letter made my day. Reading that letter made my week.

Now I just have to get my act together and write back.

I think I am one of the worst correspondents in existence. My first husband was definitely worse than I am, so I will not claim to be world's worst. Nope. I'm not the worst. But not the best, either. I am somewhere in between, but closer, much, much closer to the worse end of the scale.

When I was in high school, I had a pen pal. She lived in Japan. When she received a letter from me, she wrote back. When I received a letter from her, I thought about it, and then wrote back. The transit time was such that the exchange rate was about one letter a month. Then the exchange stopped. I am not sure, but I think I got a last letter and didn't write back. It might have been the other way round, but I don't think so. You see, I'm the bad correspondent.

I forget birthdays, and if I don't remember you are having a birthday, I don't send a card. Simple? Maybe. Margret was the one who always remembered who had birthdays, and when they had them. She reminded me.

Margret liked to get cards, and to send them. Birthday cards, definitely, but any sort of card was fine with her. I would help her looking up addresses, but she addressed the envelope in her own hand. She liked to choose cards to give, to send, and planned on trips to the card shop when birthdays were coming up. I kept a collection of cards for many occasions, and she liked to go through and pick just the right one. Sometimes my collection didn't have just what she wanted, and she had to settle for second best, or create a card. I can't think of when she made up the last original card, but I'm sure it wasn't in the past year or so.

Margret kept many of the cards she received. Some she had in a stack in a drawer in her dresser. One year her sister helped her put some of the cards she had received into a frame. There are Christmas cards, birthday cards, lots of valentines, some 'thinking of you' cards and a Halloween card. She hung it on her bedroom door, where, over the years, some of the card shifted toward the bottom of the frame. I would sometimes watch her studying the cards, and wonder what she was thinking. I never asked. Permit me to imagine her thinking "I got this card from D, it's very pretty. This one came from B, she has great taste. My friend W gave me this one with violets. I'm glad I have friends and family."

No comments: