I have been taken to task by at least two friends this week for general shittiness related to my correspondences, or lack thereof, and I would like to commend those friends for: a) holding me to my word regarding Mr. Richard Soko, fisherman, Malawi (see below); and b) not even suggesting that said shittiness could perhaps, in any way, be applied to the time that has elapsed between our own correspondences.
The long-delayed and -dreaded postal ordeal turned out to be, in the end, less harrowing and soul-searing than I’d feared. In fact, from the time I set foot in the post office to the time the sealed and stamped envelope left my hands, I’d aged – both physically and spiritually – by no more than three minutes. That this only compounds the guilt and general self-loathing I feel at this point, of course, can be left unsaid.
An interesting postcript: the very helpful and not at all unfriendly postal worker told me that the letter should be arriving in Malawi within the week. This makes me wonder exactly which sea turtle or tree sloth is being used by the Malawian postal service, since Richard’s last letter – dated mid-November – only arrived in New York last week. For once, it seems, Burundi can be held up as a model for us all.