Sunday, June 10, 2012

Thing Number Twenty-Three | Write

We’ve been writing off and on ever since our college days. My very first communication with Robin Ann was a Snoopy card she sent me to introduce herself after we were assigned as roommates at Biola University. This was long before Facebook (back in the days when a college facebook was every freshman’s senior photo in, yes, an actual book). It was a great card and told me so much about her. I could see her handwriting (round and loopy) and read all the details about her life (she’s good at sharing the details) and I could tell that she was open to being a friend from the get-go. I wrote back, of course, and that was the start of our correspondence. We wrote back and forth on school breaks (and called, too, but we’ve always also written to each other). After graduation, we were still writing. Then she married Edwin and they moved to Costa Rica and then to Ecuador and we were writing more consistently because it’s expensive to make an overseas call! So we wrote and I sent care packages and we started a circle journal and exchanged e-mails. Robin Ann and I have always been all about writing.

Which is why I wasn’t surprised when, years after they moved back to the States, she suggested that we commit to writing to each other weekly. I wasn’t surprised but I was a bit taken aback. Write to each other weekly? Would we really have that much to share? Couldn’t anything we had to say weekly be covered in an e-mail? Or, eh, a phone call (I kind of hate phone calls)? Even, dare I say, a text (back when we started this, neither one of us were texters)?

It’s been amazing. Yes, sometimes I can’t think of anything major to share from my week. When that happens I write about a book or my latest clothing purchase or I just list the schedule of my day. She always seems to have something to share (but, then, she’s got two daughters who have all sorts of activities and a husband who works for Sony pictures so there’s more interesting stuff going on in her life). Sometimes it seems like a bit of a chore to sit down and actually write something and get it in an envelope and find a stamp and make it to the mailbox before the mailman comes (her brother Chad is a mailman so both of us feel kind of proud that we’re doing our bit for the USPS). But I love that, once a week, I will open the mailbox and find a card or a letter or a postcard or a note from Robin Ann. And she will open her mailbox and find the same thing from me.

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