I love getting mail. Birthday cards from my grandparents & godparents in San Pedro (with money) and my Aunt Alice in Baltimore started it all. It gave me a tremendous thrill to see my name on the envelope. The thrill continues even now when I get a card or invitation or postcard or letter. I remember when I went to Girl Scout camp, I made my parents promise to send me letters. Hearing my name at mail call or finding a letter on my sleeping bag was so exciting!
As a teenager, I was completely enthralled with Tiger Beat magazine. In my humble 15-year old opinion, Tiger Beat had the best pictures and stories of the heartthrobs of the time. I would wake up early Saturday morning, allowance in hand, ready to hit Stater Bros. with my mom. While she would grocery shop, I would be at the magazine stand, reading the latest teen magazines. Tiger Beat would be tucked under my arm, saving it until I was safe & secure in my bedroom where I could dream about going on a date with Scott Baio or being serenaded by Rick Springfield. One section that was of particular interest to me was the Classified page. There, kids could list ads looking for pen-pals. I always read the ads, but for some reason, I never replied to one. *Light bulb* Submit your own, Rissa! So, I did.
A couple of months later, I started getting letters: Hi, saw your ad in Tiger Beat - I like Rick Springfield, too! I love Loverboy! I love rollerskating, too! It was such a thrill to get letters from all over the country. I wrote back to each and every person.
One of the first to reply to my reply was Kristin from Iowa. We were pen-pals throughout high school - sending letters, birthday gifts, photos, even phone calls on occasion. After high school, I think we lost touch for a bit but reconnected after Kristin married and became pregnant. She moved out of Iowa and we once again lost touch. We briefly reconnected when she moved out to southern California. That was...oh, geez...late 80s/early 90s...and we hadn't been in touch since.
Over the weekend, while spending quality time with Insomnia, I got to reminiscing. I used Facebook search...and found a girl that could possibly be the same Kristin. So, I sent her an email ~ hey, this is random and weird...my name is Rissa...I had a pen pal...are you her? Two days later - voila! - OMFG! That IS me! Friend request me!
Kristin & I have been messaging and commenting back and forth, catching up. Her family is beautiful; she looks fantastic and her life is good! It's one time I'm not cursing Insomnia.
My other pen-pal from that Tiger Beat ad, Shari, lives in Kansas. We're still in touch. I've even been out to visit her & her family a couple of times. It wasn't awkward or weird or anything; we had fun and talked like old friends. Which, we were.
Crap...this went all over the place, didn't it?! Ha! Can't really wrap it up how I intended...so, I'll just stop.