Communication Breakdown III – Just Another Love Letter
The house we occupy now used to be a rental. That means we get a lot of junk mail addressed to former tenants. Many of the names have become familiar. A certain woman apparently loved to gamble and gets constant invites from local casinos. Another man receives offers to upgrade his airline account. Familiar names, familiar junk mail.
Until a few days ago.
At first I thought it might be for my own boyos from their grandma. The envelope was covered with stickers and stamps a little boy might like.
But it wasn't for them. The boy's name on the envelope was unfamiliar. The return address bore a man's name and home address. Perhaps it was mis-delivered; it happens. No, the address was ours.
I carried it into the house, examining it the whole time. The envelope bulged from several papers folded inside. This was no junk mail. This was an honest-to-god personal letter.
So I started weaving little stories around this letter:
A father had left his family. Years later he wanted to explain his reasons to his son, but the boy and his mother had since moved on.
A woman fled her abusive husband, taking their only child. Now he is hunting them down, just a step behind, trying to win over his son.
A woman who had become estranged from her daughter discovered years later that she was a grandma. She sent a letter addressed to her grandson to her daughter's last known residence. The grandma is a widow, and is still using her old return address labels with her husband's name. Her daughter doesn't know she's lost her father.
It struck me as terribly sad, this letter.
I couldn't open it; it wasn't mine. I should have just put it right back into the mailbox with 'RETURN TO SENDER' scribbled across it in my nearly-illegible hand.
But this was no alabaster jar. It was paper. And you can sometimes see right through paper...
I could make out just enough words to unravel the mystery.
Some stories are better left unfinished.
Labels: What would Cheesy do?