may i call you "dearest margaret" or should we save that until we've become confidants. i have written with the hope that you are accepting new friends. i have always been a huge fan, but lately i have been asking my self, "self, why aren't we friends with margaret atwood? her books are everywhere in this house and i feel happy when i see her picture." self said, "write her a letter, maybe two. i'm sure she'll love you" i thought great idea and besides that margaret, i want to talk about all those great stories of yours. plus, i'm reading "wolf hall" right now and i want to get out of it. i'd like to start a marathon of your books but i don't want to hurt "old what's her face's" feelings by stopping midstream and also, i vowed to mohamed in january to finish every book i start this year. honestly, wolf hall is lovely but jesus must we hear about every time thomas cromwell pricks his finger... or is that the other way around - i forget how that old saying goes. so i thought striking up a friendship with you would help get me through those last 300 pages of the book and then, its on to the greener pastures of your prose - some of which, i must say right now, i don't understand, especially the poetry. i'll read something you've written and think to myself, "ok self, what does that mean?" and self says "i got nothing, maybe you're reading above your grade level again."
but all that can wait because let me tell you about my morning.....
my husband often says the problem with me is i have no natural fear of strangers. i'm like one of those giant tortoises on the galapagos islands. (speaking of that, remind me to tell you about the time i found the sexy holiday photos from the galapagos. it's a great story but i'll save it because i sense our relationship is going to be long term). i, like those tortoises, wander about bumping into humans at will, with no natural ability to detect danger
this morning - picture me, slumped on the sofa, waiting for my 14 year old daughter to get out of the shower so i can drive her to the vet clinic, where she volunteer/works once a month. it's about 7:30 AM. i am dressed in my grey flannel pajama pants, the ones with the red cardinals on them. they are quite possibly my favorite article of clothing and my stretched out gap, man's sweater, also grey. i have on no bra and i have not, as yet, performed my morning toilet. a knock comes at the back door. i open it to find a very intoxicated man. i will not reveal his ethnicity but let's just say his people where already on the north american continent when my people arrived. i realize that information is not politically correct but i want show, like the pope, my appeal as a problem solver has no racial bounds. i'm acquainted with this man but not in a way that would encourage early morning cold calls. he wonders if i can give him a ride to his cousin's house. i should point i live on the bald ass prairie, my nearest neighbour is nearly 1 mile away, so this fellow has put considerable effort into this transportation plan of his. i say "why not, almost stranger guy. let me grab my keys" during the ride he tips from side to side as he laments his inability to remember the events of the previous evening. his family is not home. he states this rather dramatically by saying, "my people have all disappeared." he hopes, in his words "he didn't do something stupid." he's going to his cousin's because he's lonely and wants to continue to drink. "grand" i say, "well, here we are and have a lovely time." he thanks some invisible person in my car named beth and we part ways.
i return home, pick up my daughter and drive her to the vet clinic. she, like her father, comments on my lack of stranger boundaries. i tell her personal danger can not compete with the chance to hear a great story. i realize this is probably not my finest piece of maternal advice margaret, so don't base your opinion on that one statement - i'm going for full disclosure here......so, in several shakes of a lamb's tail i return home and decided that what i need, is a nap. i settle in and no sooner had i shut my eyes than a knock came on the back door. i opened the door to reveal another intoxicated gentleman. i think to myself, well this is getting curiouser and curiouser. he too, is wishing for a ride - again to this apparent party central, cousin. "well, of course" i say "i know the way now." it's a rare day indeed when not one but two drunken semi-strangers present themselves at your back door. let me try to remember when it happened before..... right - never. i grab my keys and load the fellow into my suv. this man is weighted down by bottles. beer in his pockets, a quart of rum in his hand. he has lost the lid to the rum somewhere and strangely, he apologizes for this. on the drive he tells me he drinks because he can't find love. don't think me cruel for exposing this. i believe that he could hardly expect confidentiality at 9 am in the passenger seat of my kia. he topples over a bit and spills rum on the heated leather seats. i suddenly remember i'm still in my pajamas and i have yet to look in a mirror today. i wonder if i'm danger of being ravished. i asked my self if i'm in danger. my self says, "who knows". we arrive at the cousins and he is reluctant to get out of the car. he's telling me about his ex girlfriend and his passion for her. "off we go now," i say. several people have gathered on the doorstep. i wonder if i'll be invited in. alas not. i return home and make some tea. this day, i decide is wearing me out. i am not equipped for this much unsolicited excitement. i must rest.
so you see margaret, this is why i can't talk about your writing today. i will avail to cover that in my next correspondence. but feel free to write back and tell me how you like me so far.