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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Try to remember...

Dear Peter,

I never thanked you.

I wanted you to know that I remember.  I remember slow dancing in the bowling alley.  I remember having lunch in the college cafeteria.  In retrospect, I realize that perhaps you were encouraging me to be a better person, to fulfill my potential.  But, at that point, I was so very young and afraid. 

I also remember seeing “Funny Girl” with you and having dinner in a local restaurant.  I remember that you brought me a bouquet of flowers (my first!) when I had my wisdom teeth extracted.

And, of course, I remember your other gift.  My birthday gift.  The one you sent by mail.  Because, by that time, I was being courted by another young man.  And I fell for him.  He didn’t encourage me to go back to college.  He had a house and a sports car.  I was only seventeen…..and I wanted so desperately to get out of my mother’s house. He offered me the quick and easy solution.

But you were correct.  It was a huge mistake, the first of many that I would continue to make for years to come.  I wonder what I would have done if you had tried harder?

I remember the brown paper package.  Opening it to find a square box wrapped in pink and red rose printed wrapping paper.  Very pretty.  Rose is the flower of June.  How a propos.  I remember opening it and finding the stuffed toy animal – the donkey.  The jackass, to be more precise.  I was horrified.  You were such a nice, sweet young man.  How could you do such a thing?  I could feel my face burning.  

You can see that you left a lasting impression.  I never forgot it or you.  As I said before, I wonder if you might have swayed me if you had persisted just a bit more?  But it was so long ago……
I do thank you.  I knew, from your “comment,” that I was heading toward disaster, and yet I continued forging ahead.  Thank you for telling me what you really thought, albeit symbolically.  I wish some more people had said, one way or another, “June, you’re being an ass.”  No one did.

Somehow, eventually, I managed to land on my feet.
So, thank you, Peter.  I hope all worked out well for you. 

With (mostly) fond memories,