A few years back I worked a summer job packaging Windows 95. (I told you it was a few years back.) The job was nothing to be excited about. Mostly I spent my days chatting with my fellow employees while doing relatively mindless work. I met lots of interesting people (most of us worked for the same temp agency) that I would never have met any other way. The pay was depressing, and the work was mind-numbing. The people made going to work worth it. I worked that job for almost 2 months before heading off to college. I was sad to leave my friends, one particularly.
More than two years later I ran into this person at my new job selling auto parts. She came in late one night and sold her some much-needed wiper blades. Exciting, I know. The best part for me, was that she remembered who I was. That really made my day. I haven't forgotten that day, or that person.
For most of the next 3 years my life was in constant motion. I was on my mission, or working overseas, or going to school and dating DH long-distance. I was difficult to keep track of. Life happened and I lost touch with this friend.
For the last couple of months I have had this nagging to reconnect with this friend. The internet is great, but not omniscient. Especially when the person you are seeking has a very common name. I asked people I knew that may know her or her friends to help me find her. I just couldn't let it go. Recently, every couple of weeks I would get this intense drive to find her. Always, I couldn't find the right way to find her. It was really frustrating.
I hadn't thought about finding her for a month or so, and then I got this nagging feeling I needed to try again. I put it off for a day or two because I was sure that I had exhausted my resources in trying to find this person (short of a private investigator). Then I sat down at my computer and I had the distinct impression to search using a specific piece of information. So I did, and that led to more information that I searched. Eventually, I found her address, and webpage. I was overjoyed, but crestfallen. I had no email address, no phone number, no means of immediate contact that I have come to demand in this post-modern world.
I was sure that I had found the right person, and yet I sat on this information for 3 days, unsure what to do next (while knowing the best way to proceed). Monday, I finally sat down and wrote a brief letter. I put it in the mailbox in the late morning. Every hour I kept thinking, "does she have it yet?" And then I would remember that I sent snail mail, not email, and that my instant gratification would not be satiated.
Yesterday, I was trying to figure out what day the USPS would deliver my message, and then I concluded that it was reasonable to assume it wouldn't arrive until today. I put off my need for validation one more day, and went on to an afternoon of mommy tasks.
I wrote the letter timidly. I wanted to reconnect with my friend from long ago, but my greatest fear was that she had forgotten who I was. It had been 11 years since we last saw each other, and 14 since we last had a long discussion.
I got an email last night from this friend. She got my letter. (I'm picturing her tearing it open, anticipating its contents) She writes to say that she's been trying to find ME! but hadn't been able to. Since she'd failed to find me, she tried telepathy to get me to find her. I had tried to find her many times over the last 4 or 5 years, and one day the right search came to me. I found her. I'm so excited.
Now all I want to do is talk to her on the phone. Email just can't give me the fix that I'm looking for. It's like tasting a dish or treat from your childhood that you loved, but haven't had in a long time. Somebody says they will get you some more, but you aren't sure when. You still have that wonderful taste in your mouth, and you want more of it. There you sit unable to control this intense desire for something so wonderful, and unable to do anything to satisfy it.
So friend, call me 'cause I miss you.