Pen Pals (and the cold hard facts)

Hey, I finished school! I graduated with honours from my programme! I’m just waiting for the last piece of paper from the Department of Health and I am going to be motoring into business! But that’s not important.

I recently reconnected with a lovely friend of mine. She is often in my thoughts, but recent events had led me to get some advice from her before I drove myself mad with imaginative and excessive ideas. We used to dance together in Brighton, what seems like a lifetime ago, and between the two of us, we have weathered out what is likely the most painful heartaches we could hope to ever endure. She poured wine while I sobbed on the bedroom floor. I poured wine while she pushed food around, unable to eat for the hurt.

I sent her a message over Facebook, regretting the impersonal nature of the medium immediately. Luckily, she’s not that sort of girl who cares about that.

She suggested we become real, old-fashioned pen pals. I think my last pen pal faded away when I was about 10 or 11, but the thought of setting a pen to real paper for a friend was delighting and exciting, and I instantly agreed. Not to mention that I have a modest, but growing, collection of fun and interesting cards to use now that I am signed up with Proper Post UK (yes, they DO ship globally!).

I sat down and penned her a note immediately. The practice of writing feels rusty and creaky to me, where it used to come so naturally. I rambled about the weather and something else that was equally cringe-inducing. I thought “F*ck it. At least it’s a card and it’s pink.” I am sure that the words will start to flow more naturally as we get in a rhythm. There something so satisfying about putting a physical object into the mail box, knowing that she will touch it and open it and read my scratchy handwriting in a few days.

I just might take up writing to more friends as pen pals. It’s certainly more cheerful than the exercise I just undertook to spell out the household expenses…

What a sobering ordeal. I am still not set up in business, despite being very close to it now, so my income is almost nothing. Cowboy has had a reasonable year, but his work is always seasonal, and we didn’t get the horses sold that we planned to, so we will likely be feeding them for another winter. I finally tallied up the costs that we definitely have, the ones we haven’t been saving for, and the costs we should have but don’t because we can’t afford home insurance or a dental plan… I will need a cup of tea to deal with the cold truth of our affairs.

At the rate we are going, I really should rewrite that absurd novel of mine and try to sell a few copies. It surely wouldn’t hurt.

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3 thoughts on “Pen Pals (and the cold hard facts)

  1. Awesome idea on the pen pal go! You should do it. My penal that I’ve had since childhood (somewhere about eight years old) from South Africa comes for two weeks every year to visit the Hk Bar. She has made at least six trips. Amazing to grow up with each other and now know each other “in person”. I agree, the writing will come back to you. You just need to flex your muscles! Lol. Also congrats on graduating!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Heather! How lovely that you’re still connected with somebody you’ve been writing to for so long, and that you now get to spend time together in person. I often wonder what happened to my old pen pals. I’ll have much more time to write now I don’t have school – so much so that I’m not sure what to do with myself!

      Liked by 1 person

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