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So Many Memories

Mary receives a mysterious letter.

Mary was anxious to get to her Bedroom right after I handed her a mysterious letter that was reeking with a man’s cologne. One thing I know for sure said Joann; the cologne does not belong to Peter because I never smelled the scent that was emanating from Mary’s letter before today, Joann said, softly to herself. Joann was watching Mary as she tried her best to conceal the unknown note from being seen by her visitors, but for me, said Joann, all Mary did was Ignite my curiosity. Mary quickly slid the letter into her skirt pocket before anyone had a chance to see what was in her hand. Mary could hide the envelope from everyone but not the aroma which was oozing out of the opened flap, Joann whispered under her breath. Mary slowly began to edge herself closer to the staircase, at times, while holding her breath, she slid herself closer and closer, Little by little she moved toward the steps until finally, the stairs were in her sight.

Mary runs up the stairs.

Mary excused herself from her guest, as she ran up the stairs and into her bedroom, closing the door behind her. Mary’s haste to get to her room so quickly only added fuel to my suspicions, that Mary was having an affair with some strange man, Joann said, under her breath. Joann was quick to add up all the facts about Mary’s weird behavior. First, there was the letter from a stranger, the smelly envelope covered with cologne, and Mary running out on her jewelry party, and her haste to get to her room so quickly, Joann was convinced; Mary was cheating on her husband, Peter. Mary ran up to her room because she wanted to be alone so she could read her love letter, Joann said to herself.

Cathy starts a business.

Mary’s younger sister Judy had to step in for her and play the part of the hostess to Mary’s friends who had attended her jewelry party.
The only reason Mary agreed to hold the party at her home was to help out Cathy, an old friend of Mary’s. Cathy had resigned from two previous manager positions because the two Companies she worked for would only allow a woman to climb so high up the corporate ladder. After several years of watching the male managers promoted to higher and better positions that Cathy felt she should have received, resigned to start her own jewelry business. Cathy has been in business for almost four years, and she is doing great! She has close to a hundred women selling her Jewelry as independent contractors. The one thing Cathy likes most about her business is the opportunities it gives the women who can schedule as many parties as they choose and work when and where they would want. But of course, the more demonstrations a Representative conducts, the more money they will make, but this is up to each person. Cathy is now in negotiations with an Insurance company, she wants to offer her contractors a health plan that’s reasonable and meets their medical, dental, and eyeglass needs.

Could Mary be having an affair?

Joann sat on the living room couch trying to concentrate on the jewelry pieces Cathy was exhibiting to no avail because Joann was thinking If Mary was having an affair why wouldn’t she tell me? After all, “I am her best friend,” and besides, we are more like sisters than friends, and we share our secrets with one another, Joann thought to herself. Joann was angry and walked to the stairway. As she stood there, she could not stop herself from looking up the stairs because she felt like her best friend had betrayed her by not telling her about her secret lover. The more Joann thought about Mary keeping secrets, the angrier she became. After all, said Joann, who hides such an important issue as having a romantic fling with a stranger, who hides such news from their best friend.

Joann feels betrayed.

As Joann stood by the steps, feeling alone and betrayed, suddenly, she heard Mary calling her to come upstairs to her bedroom. Joann was so excited because her girlfriend Mary had called her that she tripped on the first step as she rushed trying to get to Mary’s room. As Joann entered the bedroom, Mary began to pull a white envelope out of her pocket. Mary hesitated for a second; pushing it back into her skirt as though she was teasing Joann. Joann stood there looking at Mary with a smirk on her face as Mary handed her the letter. As the note slipped slowly out of Mary’s fingers and into Joann’s hand, Mary said with a smile read it, read the letter, Mary said to Joanna.

Joann sniffs her fingers.

Joann scanned the envelope with her eyes, looking for the name of the person who sent the note to Mary, but there was no name, not even a return address. As Joann began to open the letter, she suddenly stopped to smell her fingers, and just as she suspected, her hands now smelled just like the scent that was oozing out of Mary’s letter. Mary noticed when I sniffed my fingers, and she let out a little giggle. As Joann unfolded Mary’s message, again, scanned it with her eyes hoping to find anything that would identify Mary’s unknown admirer. After Joann had failed to find a return address, she said to herself, whoever had written the note was careful enough as not to identify them.

Joann remembers her High School years.

As Joann started to read the letter, it reminded her of her High School years when young men would send love letters to their girlfriends that were dripping with some cheap cologne. Joann remembers getting dozens of such letters herself, but Mary was no longer a school girl, she is a married woman with children, Joann thought to herself, as she handed the note back to Mary. Joann, not wanting to tarnish her friendship with her best friend never asked her if she was cheating on her husband.

Joann reminisces About the past.

The more Joann thought about Mary having an affair, the more she thought about Peter, Mary’s husband, after all, Peter is not a stranger to Joann, she has known him since he began dating her friend Mary. Peter lives in Pennytin City with his parents, Ralph and Ronda Rollins. Peter’s dad owns his own Real-Estate business; the people who know Ralph personally say he is filthy rich. Joann was concerned about Peter’s well fair and how he would react if Mary his wife were sleeping around with strange men. Joann’s mind focused on Mary once again. Does Mary realize how much she is risking if indeed she is cheating on Peter, Joann thought to herself. Peter and Mary have forty-nine years of marriage under their belts; it would be a shame to throw those years away over a one night fling with a total stranger.

Can a marriage survive adultery.

Could Peter and Mary’s marriage survive such a devastating blow such as adultery? Could anyone’s marriage survive from an extramarital affair Joann murmured to herself? Joann was trying to think about happier days, so she focused her thoughts on the first time Peter and Mary had meant; it was at Jimmy’s Skate land, all the cool kids hung out at Jimmy’s because it was the place where most of the kids came to spend the day. Joann and Mary were on the floor skating when Ted and Peter were racing toward them; they were skating as fast as they could. As they got closer to Joann and Mary, Ted stopped, but Peter could not stop or slow down because this was only the second time he had been on ice skates. Although Peter lives in a large city, yet even today they do not have a skating rink anywhere in that area. Joann realized Peter was going to collide with Mary, covered her head with her jacket just as Peter crashes into Mary. As their bodies intertwined, they both tumble to the floor, laughing hysterically, it looked like love at first sight, Joann said to herself, softly. Peter and Mary sat right where they fell for at least twenty minutes or more laughing and talking before they decided to get up off the floor.

Classroom buddies.

Peter and Mary were acting like they were old buddies, even though this was the first time they had meant each other. Joann watched Peter and Mary as they struggled to get their footing so they could get up off of the Ice.
as Joann looked at Mary, she remembered the first time they had meant it was in kindergarten, they both had turned four that previous year and was in the same classroom. Joann and Mary have been best friends ever since they attended School together. Joann also remembered when they joined the Brownies; there were four of us, Me, Mary, Martha, and Katie. We all entered on the same day. Our parents called us the four musketeers. It was in the Brownies that Mary got her nickname, it happened while we were camping in the woods. Mary had to go to the bathroom, and our troop leader told her to go behind a tree. Well, it so happened that Mary brushed against a poison ivory bush and after that encounter, the girls began calling her itchy butt because she could not stop scratching her bottom. Katie’s parents moved to England, and of course, Katie had to go with them, and Martha’s parents moved down South because her father received a job offer from a Company in the South. And we lost track of those two girls.

Peter and Mary struggle to stand.

Joann refocused her attention on Mary, as she was getting up from the floor, Joann said to her with a smirk, welcome back to earth; Mary thought that was funny and she laughed and laughed. Peter, with one hand on Mary’s coat, and one knee still on the floor was trying to stand up. When I looked at Peter, said Joann, it reminded me of the day when he proposed to Mary, he was kneeling on one knee. Mary said yes she would marry Peter, and a year later they were married. Peter was well liked by everyone in Mary’s family, even Mary’s dad, which is a miracle because he does not like a lot of people and especially young men who come to his home with the intention of dating one of his daughters.

Why do people cheat?

Would Mary risk losing so much for a one-time fling with a stranger?
What would make someone commit adultery anyway, Joann thought? Did the marriage somehow fall apart, or did the couples sexually appetite toward one another fizzled and died, or maybe their lovemaking becomes dull and routine? What would cause people to cheat on their mate, could it be boredom that causes people to cheat on one another? Joann was so angry with Mary that she wanted to grab her shoulders and give her such a shaking; maybe this will help her come to her senses, Joann thought to herself. Joann wondered if Mary was aware of all the dangers associated with committing adultery.

Mary’s trip seems strange.

Mary’s trip to Chicago seems strange, and especially since her husband Peter has been away on business. Mary’s absences only added fuel to my suspicions that she is cheating on Peter Joann said. The way I am acting one would think Mary was cheating on me, instead of her husband, Joann whispered to herself. Joann thought about Mary and her three children because she was worried that if their mother was having an affair, how would such an act affect them?

Has Mary's personality changed?

It's Mary’s strong family values that make it hard for me to believe Mary is cheating. But, for whatever reason people do change and I guess cheating on her mate was one of the ways Mary has become different, Joann said to herself. Mary was calling me, but I never heard her until she shouted Joann!’ as loud as she could Yell. My mind was in a fog thinking about Mary’s secret affair and how such an act could ruin her marriage and her relationship with her children.

Committing adultery is a dangerous game.

Mary is my best friend, we grew up together, and she has the perfect family; why would she want to ruin her life now by having an affair? Committing adultery is a dangerous game, and it affects the whole family, and especially the children. Furthermore, there are Consequences associated with cheating on your mate; here are the four main reasons that plagues’ most families caught up in adultery.

(1) There is the danger of physical violence
(2) There is the risk of a bitter divorce.
(3) There is the nasty battle over the children,
(4) there is the battle over possessions

It’s a mystery how a married couple can spend half their life building a
happy home together only to throw it all away on a one night fling, Mary said, under her breath. Facing the prospect of a bitter divorce is the last thing Joann would want Peter and Mary to have to face, especially at this stage of their life, Joann mumbled under her breath.

Joann reads Mary’s Letter again.

Mary’s letter began with the words My Dearest Darling; Saturday was a night I’ll always remember, why? Because it was our night, it was the night my dreams became a reality as you laid there snuggled tightly in my arms. Once again your beauty and charm have captured my heart, and there is nothing I will not do, or give to you, and especially all my love and admiration. While waiting for your flight to arrive this morning made Saturday seem like forever, especially when we have so much to do and so little time. As I continued to read the letter, the note said it took forever to get through Dinner. Then we danced in the dance hall; we danced for what seemed like hours. Mary said she loved dancing; it makes her feel young again, the letter said. Finally, what seemed like an eternity, we went to our room, and as soon as the door closed to our room, we were locked tightly in each other's arms?

The night slipped by quickly.

The night seemed to slip by quickly as we lay there, on the bed making love. I feel like time has cheated me because the dawn has crept upon us so fast, one Minute I am holding you and smothering you with a kiss,’ and suddenly without warning, it was time for you to leave me again. As you showered, dressed and hurried off, your fragrance lingered behind, only to torment me until we meet again. As I read the ending of the letter, Mary said, turn the letter over and read the signature, I did as she said and then I let out a scream; what’s the name, Joann said to Mary. What does the message say, Said Mary, to Joann, as I turned the letter over, there it was in small print, and it read Peter, your loving husband? Mary could not help but let out a squall as she shouted, oh-my-gosh Joann! In disbelief. Mary said what did you think? I was having an affair, red-faced and embarrassed, Joann said yes I did. Mary said, how dare you, Joann. Maybe you do not know me as well as you say. Furthermore, didn’t you know Peter was out of town closing a big real Estate deal, Mary said to Joann, this sale is the mother of all transactions if Peter seals this agreement he will retire at the end of the year, and we will spend our time traveling around the world? Mary said to Joann, I took an early morning flight to Chicago, so I could spend the night with my husband Peter Since it was our wedding anniversary.

Mary is Heartbroken.

And you stand here accusing me of cheating on my husband, the man whom I love with all my heart; how dare you, Joann, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive you, Joann. Red-faced, Joann turned to Mary and said in her defense, what was I supposed to think Mary, you was acting like a little school girl since you received that, that smelly letter. Well, I’m sorry said Mary, but you hurt me, you hurt me deeply, accusing me of cheating on Peter, ugh! Joann, do you think I’m that kind of woman? Who would sleep around with strange men after being married to Peter for all these years? Listen, Joann, I love my husband, my children, and my home and family. And I would not risk losing any of them by fooling around with other men, Mary said to Joann.

Can Mary forgive Joann?

Would you forgive Joann? Suppose you were Joann and misjudged your best friend, wouldn’t you want your friend to forgive you? A real friendship is like a good marriage; it should be able to withstand a few bumps in the road. Mary said to her best friend; I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive you, Joann. How about you, can you forgive Joann, or will you kick her to the curb?

© 2017 Rev Dennis L Johnson

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