Dearest Margaret.

For Corinne 04.05.11 (c) C. Quintana 2011

My friend Meg and I started a tradition several years back of writing letters back and forth– the catch: our letters were never simply to each other, but rather, to imagined people in imagined circumstances.  Something like historical fiction in letter form. One I remember involved a couple of friends separated by one family’s journey out west on the Oregon Trail.  So, a couple of nights ago I wrote one of my own– with no particular recipient in mind.  But why not imagine being in Grace’s shoes opening this letter for the first time.

April 3, 1934

Dearest Margaret,

The spring may as well be winter for all the cold we’ve been having. I’m beginning to wonder if we may as well do away with the title, “Spring,” since it has so forfeit to winter and summer, disappeared between the pressure of the two.  Spring always has been something of a middle child, wouldn’t you say?

I suppose you have all the experience in that arena, seeing as I, as you well know, was an only child.  But there are no complaints from my end–and there never will be! I was one of the luckiest children in all of New York City and have grown into one of its luckiest women.  Harold makes a fine husband–indeed, the finest.  I think you both would get along rather splendidly– albeit his cigar habit may offend you.  You always were the most refined of any of us.

When will you visit? We would have such a time.  I realize you are a professional now, but you must learn to take well-deserved holidays.  A woman of industry does not equal a woman without rest.

Pleasantries aside, I would also like to apologize for my behavior when last we spoke.  It was utterly inappropriate.  Do forgive me.  I realize only now that you were right.  This is the best way–the only way.

Know that you are always in my thoughts.

Your friend,

Grace Marie Vandercamp


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