Dear Caroline . . .

The following is a work of fiction based on recent events and experiences in Ireland. 

Dear Caroline,

I hope that everything is going well in New Jersey.  I just had to write to you today because my day reminded me of our childhood.  I miss having you in Ireland, but I love when you visit.

Mom and dad came over for lunch as usual.  Mom brought her brown bread and dad requested my homemade vegetable soup.  After they left I had to help Patrick on the farm. He was shearing the sheep and I was going to move the peat from the far side of the field back to the barn.  There was quite a lot of peat for me to bring over.

Patrick using a sleán to bring the bog above the trench.

So, I figured I would drive the truck over and make the process easier.  Johnny took the new truck to school because hurling practice was going to run late.  This left me with “Old Bessy”. Yes, we still have Old Bessy. Patrick said that she had a full tank of gas and would be fine for me to use.  I filled the bed of the truck with all of the peat so that I would only have to take one trip. I made my way back to the barn and came across, “Rick’s hill” we used to race up when we had to get dad for dinner.  We’ve had a lot of rain these past few weeks, so the roads have turned into mud. Today, it was sunny and I didn’t think about the rain. As I was driving up the hill, I heard a clunk and Bessy gave out. I didn’t even try to press the gas pedal because I remembered the time when you and dad got stuck in the woods for a few hours.  When I stepped out of the truck I couldn’t even see the tires.

Logs of Peat that have been dried from the sunlight.

I pulled out my phone to call Patrick, but of course, there was no service.  I didn’t want to make things worse, so I started to walk back to the house. I haven’t walked from the far end of the field in a long time.  It was a lot longer than I remember. As I was passing the pond, I got a rush of memories from when you and I used to play tag with our cousins.  Remember we used to hold pretend weddings there too? It was as if I was walking down memory lane. I reached the end of the pond and heard rustling in the woods.  I stopped and my heart started to race. I thought to myself, “Is it a fox? a badger?” I was bracing myself for the worst. All of a sudden I saw it come out from behind a tree and I yelped.  It was just a hare! It ran away quickly and I laughed to myself. I used to be fearless in these woods with you!

Today made me miss you so much.  I hope you enjoyed reading this and made you laugh.  I can’t wait to see you so soon!

All of my love,

Your Twin