The mail is a running joke in our house, as every time we go to fetch the mail, Lucille and I happily let Rachel or Hannah pick it up, as if there is something in there, it is probably not for us. In good fun, we say things like, “its good we have each other, since no one loves us enough to send mail!” We are aware of how ridiculous this is, but it is a fun way to tease Hannah who gets mail (a card or letter) from the US nearly every day. To which they usually remind me its family or friends they’ve done their time with or paid off; the only letter I’ve gotten (it came in Cape Town) was from Ireland! None of us could fake that kind of fan support, haha.
Phone calls are pretty much the same. It costs a lot to make a call here (we only pay for outgoing phone calls), and right now, none of us have the cash to buy airtime and make longer calls. So we talk each other’s ears off when Hannah and Rachel are reading their letters or talking on the phone to their family on the phone.
Tonight while sitting at dinner, my phone rang unexpectedly (it rarely does that unless its one of the 3 girls I was sitting at the table with). I ran to the other room (to get better reception) only to be presently surprised by the voice on the other end of the line: my old friend Ruth West! Ruth and I were friends my first year at Simpson. She was on a 1-year exchange from Ireland, and though we were not the best of friends during that time, we did get close enough to take a quick road trip to visit my family in South Dakota… and close enough to keep in touch since then! What a pleasant surprise, then, to hear her beautiful voice and strong Irish accent on the other line!
Ruth phoned to follow up on an email she sent but I had not received, and wanted to know: can she come visit? Of COURSE my response was pure joy and excitement, I haven’t seen her since 2003! She has family in Cape Town she is hoping to visit, so it only makes sense to stop over here and say hello! What a wonderful, pleasant surprise; I certainly hope I get to welcome her in my home soon!
I sat back at the table excited about such prospects, and only moments later Hannah’s phone also rang: her mom. The popular girl on the block couldn’t be outdone, we laughed! But then… my phone rang again, and much to everyone’s surprise, it was: my mom! I haven’t talked to her since leaving Cape Town, as I dont have internet access and she can’t figure out how to call me via skype. So though it may have cost her an arm and half of her leg, she called from her cell phone: a mama’s gotta talk to her girl, and it had been too long! So precious!
It was great to hear familiar voices, to be reminded of the world so far and wide and to be amazed at how great technology is that we could so easily be in communication with each other! In an hour I picked up a phone and three continents were connected! Great conversations were had, with exciting news or updates. News that was welcome in this hole of no- internet or other connections to the busy world that continues on around us!