Andy, I have to tell you, there was a smell when I walked outside this morning. It’s the smell of summer, you know the one. The air is humid and you can feel it all over. You sniff and the smell of grass, of nature, fills your soul. I love when my soul feels full.
The smell of summer. I remember our summers together, when we finally got to stay home from school. We had some good times, didn’t we? You were in love with me, back then. I knew it and even though you denied it, I think you knew it too. I think we should have done something about it, or I could have been a better friend and just returned the sentiment. But it wouldn’t have been genuine.
And then where would we be?
Well, honestly, we’d probably be about where we are now. You grew up, and I guess I did, too. Who doesn’t, really, grow even a little after twenty years? I don’t think you’re in a bad place, and I’m not, either, but don’t you wish we had those summers back? That time at home? Those moments together?
When I saw you the other day, on the subway, I realized how long it’s been since we spoke. I’m sure you were just as surprised to see me. I can’t even imagine. I’m sorry to hear about your mother passing, I know how much she meant to you. She was always so sweet.
Speaking of smells, your mother made the best toast in the neighborhood. That sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? It’s just bread that’s basically burnt. But, no, your mother added something to it. Maybe it was butter? You’d know better than me.
Anyway, I’m sorry we didn’t talk longer, I’m sure you understand. Work just eats up everything these days. You’d be surprised how busy I can be. Very surprised, I’m sure. There are a lot of calls, a lot of needs to fulfill.
I don’t mean to brag, Andy. You know me.
Except these few precious minutes I have, right now, to write you this letter. I haven’t written a letter to anyone in, I don’t know, years? If I tried writing by hand, my wrist would probably break off entirely. Then I’d be down to just six arms instead of seven. Do you remember when my first arm fell off, that summer before you entered high school?
That was a rough year.
I’m not asking you to apologize, Andy, I just want you to know that I remember everything. Things haven’t been as busy for me as they have been for you, I can promise you that. But you should know already. I imagine you sitting there, reading this letter, and thinking to yourself, “I wonder how she found the computer?”
You don’t have to wonder, you already know the answer. I know fun, Andy, and I know how to get out. You couldn’t bottle me up forever in the back of your mind.
Please understand, I’m not attempting to sound malicious here, or vengeful, or full of spite. Spirit, maybe, but not spite. Never spite. Remember what your mother used to say? “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.”
For years you kept me down, Andy, but now I’m back and I’m here to tell you of everything good again. Please don’t shut me out. I insist.
Don’t be a stranger, Andy. I’d like to be your friend again. We would find a way to have fun over and over, no matter how old you are. You’re never too old for your very own, personal, unique, always by-your-side friend.
No doubt about it.
Take care — Francine the Spider