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Thursday, 11 September 2008


By Peter Tibbles

I hope this is Pierre. If it is, I'm sure you'll remember me. If not, well, it's not every day you'd get a letter from New York. I know it's been a long time and I wasn't all that good at writing in the first place, but I'd still like to hear from you. I finally have a computer. I wondered if I could find addresses in Australia. Phone-books, maybe. Try Melbourne. And there you were. It must be you. My address is angie@fiddlydee.com
Angela (Hayes)

Dear Angie,
Hey, it is I. What have you been doing? Tell me everything.

Dear Pierre,
What have I done since we last wrote to each other (years ago)? I got married, but you knew that. That's probably why you stopped writing. I wish you hadn't. We're divorced now. I'm back in New York.
Love Angie

Hi Angie,
I stopped writing, yes. I thought, "How would Angie feel if some babe from her husband's past kept writing to him?" .
Love Pierre

Oh Pierre,
I wish you'd kept writing. Oh by the way Happy Thanksgiving.
Love Angie

Hi Angie,
Ummm, Thanksgiving is an American holiday. We don't do it here.
Love Pierre

Dear Pierre,
You do Christmas, don't you? I seem to recall that you weren't terribly interested in it either. What are you going to do? Sit alone with your wine and a drumstick? Have some floozies come around and take you out?
Love Angie

Dear Angie,
Merry Christmas. I see that Bush and Cheney have staged a coup d'état. Now you know what it was like to live in Australia in 1975.
Love Pierre

Dear Pierre,
I vaguely remember you writing to me about that.
Remember that day we met at the Y in San Francisco? I thought you were the best looking man in the room. You were probably the only straight man in the room as well. Lucky for me.
Love Angie
P.S. You didn't mention the floozies.

Oh Dear Angie,
That was an odd time back then. I found that the love of my life had married when I was over in San Francisco. It was only later I realized what I had lost. She divorced him and we got back together again for a while. Then the company sent me back to America. To Boston. I asked her to come with me but she wouldn't. There's a distinct lack of floozies around these parts (unfortunately).
Love Pierre

You invited me to stay with you in Boston, and I did. Are you telling me I was second choice? I thought I was the love of your life.

Hey Angie,
No, you thought I was the love of your life. You said you liked me because I was a gentleman; that I didn't jump your bones at the first opportunity back in San Francisco.
Love Pierre

What, you didn't do it because you were mooning over little Miss Love-of-Your-Life? The one who sent you the Dear John letter? Oh, by the way, was that little Miss Love-of-Your-Life with you when I rang you? I bet it was.

Dear Angie,
Was that the time you rang me at 3 in the morning?

Yes it was. It sounded as if you were covering the handset every now and then. You always said you lived alone.

Too long ago.

Dear Pierre,
An aunt of mine has died and left me some money. Just a few thousand. I thought I'd come to Australia, to visit you. I've always wanted to do that but I could never afford it. I've seen so much of your beaches on TV. I love beaches. Are they really like that? I bought myself a new swimsuit. A one-piece, black number, I couldn't wear a bikini any more. We will go swimming won't we?
Love Angie

Dear Angie,
I hate to disabuse you, but Melbourne actually has winters. It's not always beach weather here, but you're welcome to swim if you like. Me, I'm reluctant even in the middle of summer. Bring the swimsuit anyway. I'd like to see you in it.
Love Green Eyes

Beautiful Green Eyes,
I imagine you'd probably prefer to see me out of my swimsuit, if I know you.
Love, Swimsuit Babe.

Howdy Babe,
I look forward to seeing you (with or without swimsuit).
Love Pierre

My Dear Pierre,
I'm picking up my tickets tomorrow morning at the Trade Center. That's where my travel agent is. I'll send you a postcard. Yikes, I'll have to be up at the crack of dawn to be there by 8:30 to get to work on time.
All my love,

[EDITORIAL NOTE: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. Instructions are here.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 02:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


What was it my writing teacher used to call this--finding the universal in the particular? You did it so well.


I read every word of this story and,believe it or not, followed every date. BUT, I never saw it coming! Powerful writing and impeccable timing.....

Nope, never saw it coming, just like the events on that day. Got the same kicked in the stomach feeling, because this emailing woman was someone we knew.

BBC America ran a story on their World News program about Post Secrets (http://postsecret.blogspot.com/), a blog where people send in self-designed postcards with their deepest secrets on them. One of the postcards they mentioned said this: "Everyone who knew me before 9/11 thinks that I am dead."

WOW, I'm always amazed at your creative writing.

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