Upper Darby, Pennsylvania USA
I struggle with my keys at the front door as I hear the phone ringing, of course the one time I left the cell at home is the time I hear the Frou Frou song from Garden State blaring through the door as I carry three bags of groceries, my schoolbag, and a stack of papers that need sorting. Finally, after yelling, "I'm coming I'm coming," to the phone as if it could hear me, I drop everything in a trail leading to the dining room table where the phone sits.
Him: It's me.
I hear the voice and recognize it right away, even though we have never spoken by phone or in person. I just wasn't the type.
me: Wow. It's about time.
Him: Yes, well, I don't usually do this, but for some reason, you struck me as the one to call.
me: So you have a sense of irony...interesting.
Him: So go ahead. I'm all ears.
me: Great! Well, first I want to know why I found her, and why she left me. Or, I guess what I'm ultimately asking is, why is there bad in the world?
Him: She taught you, just as everything does. You learned so much, you said it yourself the other day that you never met anyone who had such a huge influence on your life. You even thought of her as a possible hero of yours. Your eyes are much wider for having known her.
As for the other part, of course there is bad in the world, after all, if there weren't, how could you really understand and enjoy the good parts?
me: But so many people don't recognize the good parts, so is this all really working? I know friends who have everything, much more than me, and yet they complain more than anyone.
Him: Of course they do, not everyone's eyes are open to the beauty of the world. Wasn't that you who stopped to look at that praying mantis the other day? You spent at least ten minutes just sitting and marveling at it over an iced tea at Starbucks. Not everyone would do that, most wouldn't even notice it. Nobody else did.
me: That's not true, what about all the kids who stopped?
Him: Well, yes. Children are different, but then you knew that already. They tend to notice the little things in life, the important ones, and they are easily excited over them. That's huge. Most people lose that as they get older, apparently somehow you didn't. It's because of the Vonnegut character.
me: It is, it really is. I admit it. That one little segment in the intro changed my life. "If this isn't great, what is?" That one simple sentence opened my eyes.
Him: Yes. I know all about your ideal. You want someone who will share those childlike things with you, and you know what? She wasn't the one who would do that. As she gets older, she will lose touch, just as most do. She already has a little. As a matter of fact, she lost a huge part of it and herself when she left you. But what can I say, someday she'll regret it. And someday you'll understand why.
Him: Please, like I would tell you. It could be tomorrow, it could be a decade from now. For now, just enjoy the fireflies and the rain, like you always have. You won't be disappointed.
me: Is that really what's important? Is that what decides the afterlife for us?
Him: Oh, all that stuff is just silly. You aren't that far off on your opinions and theories. Life is what you make of it, just make sure you live it to its fullest and everything will work out in the end. Enjoy the world, it's still a beautiful place. Although this president of yours is destroying more of it than any other five men throughout history combined. Enjoy yourself, stop and smell the roses as they say.
me: That's it? That's the advice you give me? Stop and smell the roses?
Him: I can't tell you anything more than you already know. Well, I could...but what's the fun in that? Anything else?
me: Guess not.
Him: Well, keep up the good work, I've always enjoyed watching you. Take care.
me: Thanks. Bye.