Clean and Elegant

Clean and Elegant

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Yours Til Ekam Inhales

It is hilarious that I wrote a book called, “I Let Go.” In truth I am rather terrible at letting go of most things. These days, writing has been very difficult. When I was eight and nine years old, this never happened. Without an alarm, I used to wake up every morning at exactly 6:30. If the long hand on my Mickey Mouse watch had somehow crept to 6:35, I would be devastated. Life would only be bearable if I woke up at 6:30. But regardless of when I made it out of bed, as soon as I was up, I would walk the dog to the mailbox, where I would mail the letter I had written to my grandparents the morning before. When I got home, I would eat cooked rolled oats slothered in plain yogurt and heaps of brown sugar. Then I would write a brand new letter. Every single day.

My letters always began with,
Dear Grandma and Grandpa, How are you? I am fine. 

My grandparents lived far away in Manitoba. They seemed incredibly ancient. White haired and wrinkled, they spent their days sitting in reclining lazy boy chairs that had remote controls. I think my letter routine began after my grandmother had a stroke. Her name was Olga and she was in her early eighties. My grandfather`s name was Julius and he was almost ninety.
“It would be nice if you sent Grandma and Grandpa a card or something,” my dad mentioned to me one day.

Never one for moderation, I took up a dedicated daily practice of sending my grandparents all my interesting news .  I told them which songs I was learning on the violin (Variations A, B, C, and D of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Bach`s Minuet in G, Long Long Ago), how many increments of twenty minutes of practice I had completed that week (at least three per day), and how many beautiful shiny stickers this earned me (several). I told them how many lengths I had done at swim practice, and how this converted into kilometers and miles. Every time I had a swim meet, I would tell them about the ribbons I'd won and how much I`d improved on my old times.  Back then, I was quite a big success. That said, in grade five, I didn`t get a main part in the Christmas concert.
December 21, 1994
Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

Hi! How are you? I am fine. I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas! We had a Christmas concert yesterday. I had to be a shepherd. I hated wearing my costume because it was to hot. I wore Dad’s bath robe with a towel on my head.
I remember that bath robe. It was a brown, pukey colour.

Quite often I liked to include jokes.

Why did the thermometer go to university?
Because he wanted to earn his degrees.

What goes Ha! Ha! Ha! Plop!?
Somebody laughing his head off!

Rather humorous. Around the middle of grade five, my letters tapered off. I became very busy maintaining my impeccable reputation in academics, swimming and violin.
April 30, 1995
Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

It’s been a long time! Aunt Barbra gave me this writing paper... Our class is going to have a science fair. I did my project on what music is best for plants (vacuum cleaners).
I liked to sign my letters, “Yours til” followed by something interesting.

Some examples were:
“Yours til the dew drops,”
“Yours til the banana splits, ”and

“Yours til the jelly rolls.”

And/or I would write, “Gotta go!” in large letters, always ending with an exclamation mark.
Mostly my endings came out of nowhere, or they occurred because I was running out of space on the paper. I guess I have never been particularly excellent at structure. Out of the letters I have, this is my favourite ending,

Oh yah the last letter I wrote at night. That’s why I said, “Yours til I fall asleep.
Yours til the bubble pops,

Erica S.
I always felt guilty for not keeping up my faithful correspondence. One summer when I was thirteen or fourteen, my grandma burst into tears when we said good-bye.  "What happened to those wonderful letters you used to write?" she cried. This made me feel terrible for a long time. Still, it was quite a delight to stumble over these the other day. Hopefully, I will feel the same way in nineteen years when I look back on this blog, and reminisce about my menstrual blood, my kale phone, and my spiritual pants.  

Big love to everyone's ten year old self. 
Gotta Go!

Yours til Ekam Inhales,

I used my smelly Mr. Sketch markers to decorate the envelopes with beautiful designs and pictures. My artistic skills seemed moderately promising at the time; however, they haven’t improved much. 


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