A Different Kind of December Letter
I want to invite you to picture two little girls, aged 7 and 8.
It’s December, sometime back in 1996. It’s winter, freezing cold, with icy blizzards. No one dares to foresee that moment when winter will fall on her knees and surrender to the spring. For now, everyone is staying quietly under the gigantic pile of snow.
These two girls frantically write something, at the shelter of their tiny little house, tucked in warm blankets, with only a flickering light casting on their paper.
One of them is frowning, holding the pen so tight that her knuckles turn white. She scribbles one or two lines, puffs, crumples the page throwing it to the floor, and grabs another one, starting all over.
The other little girl is as serene as a candle’s warm breath of light. She’s writing as if no one is reading. Line after line, she’s filling the pages with letters that are supposed to make up words.
What are they writing, you wonder?
Maybe a letter to Santa, since it’s December and all?
Nope, you didn’t get that right.
They’re writing a letter to their grandparents in the countryside.
Their dad is heading out to town, and he will leave their letters at the postal office. He’s impatiently waiting for them to finish and inspect the quality of their letters.
What do you know, the struck-by-inspiration 7-year-old girl finishes first and hands dad her letter, beaming with delight.
Dad doesn’t seem to share her excitement.
He’s picking up the letter as if he’s expecting it to dissolve in his hands.
His eyebrows paint the unspoken “So you’ve finished, already?”
And then, his whole face starts to decompose.
Clearly, he’s unhappy with what he’s reading.
As his eyes slid across the sheet, his cheeks reflexively contorted with indignation make even his nostrils tremble. His lips eventually bark words.
-That’s what you call writing?! You’re making mistake after mistake. What do you think your…