To Dear Tyler, Not Dear John
Wang Shengbo·Senior 1
At the very beginning of this year I went on a trip to Arizona, which lies in the southwest of America, blessed with glorious sunshine and azure sky. Later many a friend asked me about the trip, how I felt and what I saw. I told them what fun we had but felt that words describing marvellous scenery and relaxing lifestyle were far too weak and not at all enough to express the inner part of myself. I thought the best way to show my feelings was to display some of my letters rather than write a simple essay that many students had written before. Therefore I added part of the letters, both from me and from my American friend and his family.
This is the first letter sent by him.
“Hello, Wang Chengbo (Mike Edgware). I just wanted to say hello and welcome you to America. My Family and I are looking forward to meeting you, and showing you our culture. We are also eager to learn about your way of life when you come to visit us. We will see you in 2 weeks. Your new friend, Tyler.”
I noticed that the spelling of my Chinese name was wrong, but I was still excited and content.
While I was still sleeping on my flight back to Chengdu, his mum sent me another letter.
“Dear Mike, thank you so much for all the kind words you expressed in your letters to our family. Your letter to me brought tears of joy to my eyes. It was so sweet, I was deeply touched. Being a mother is wonderful job, but is quite exhausting at times. Sometimes mothers wonder if anyone appreciates our efforts. I think mothers in every country may feel this way. Thank you for your kind words and appreciating a mother’s job! You are such a good son. I’m sure your mother cherishes you dearly.
“I am going to frame the masterpiece paintings you made for us. We are going to hang the large painting in Jim’s office at work to remind us of you and China. Tyler is going to put the smaller one in his room where it will fit nicely. He has already put the mask on his dresser near his bed.
“As I write this letter, you are probably still in Los Angeles, waiting for your connecting flight to China. I’m sure I will be looking at my clock before I go to bed and wonder where you are, what city or ocean you are over, just as I do when Jim travels to China. I hope you have a safe flight and happy memories of your trip to America! Email us that you have arrived home safely. Sincerely, Lori Humphrey.”
It was when I just got home that I received another one from Tyler.
“Dear Mike, thank you for choosing to come to America! I am glad you had a great time and I will keep in touch with you until I arrive in China and hopefully many years after. You were very nice and I really appreciated your enthusiam for Englsih and learning the American culture. I will try my best to learn some Chinese before I go to China. My stay in China will be very fun but it will be even more enjoyable if you are my host. I know the flight will be long, but the wait is worth the Adventure that awaits us. I will talk to you on Skype or your MSN account, and I can’t wait to see you in China! Sincerely, Tyler.”
You couldn’t imagine how moved I was. It was kind of bittersweet if you’d like to ask me how I felt.
I sent one email back.
“Dear Tyler, Sarah, Catherine, Mum & Dad, I'm back in China now after a long awful flight. I stayed at the airport in Los Angeles for more than nine hours. And when I was in Beijing I had to take my luggage and then checked in again. Oh! It was more than a whole day. I wish Tyler wouldn’t have to stay at the airport for so long when leaving for China.
“It was when the plane took off that I began to realize how much I missed all of you. When I was still at the airport in Phoenix and at home in Ironwood Drive, saying goodbye and waving my arms, I felt as if I was just saying good night to each of you and the next morning I could see your smiling faces again. But when I was in the air hopelessly, I realized that it will be a long time before we see each other again. I didn't know how long it would be and I didn't know how and where we would meet each other, either. Time is so cruel, isn't it? Perhaps when I first meet Tyler again after Tyler's visit to Chengdu next month, we're all older than twenty, or even thirty. Our faces may change, and our voices may change. The whole world will be different from the present one in front of all of us. I'm not afraid of it because I trust in ourselves so much that no matter how the other things change, we will stay in touch at any time. Time cannot make our past days, laughter, memory and true feelings fade away. Hopefully, we can still gather at one place, sharing years of experiences and stories.
“While I was waiting for boarding, one of my companions said she had already filled out a form declaring that she would be the host student for visitors from Phoenix Country Day School. My heart missed a beat, for I had never known there was a form like that. I became worried that I couldn't be your host for some annoying unknown reason. I was almost desperate. During my whole flight my own imagination tangled in my brain and terrible ideas flashed through my mind. It was more than haunting. For a while I sat there, unconscious. It was true. Therefore the first thing I did as soon as the plane landed was to make sure I would be the host student. Thank God, it wasn't too late.
“I'll send more emails to Tyler preparing for his trip. Tyler, you certainly will have a great trip and back to America safely. Sorry for I don't believe in Christianity, but I hope Lord will bless us all. I wish all kind people could have a good life. Once again I do want to express my thanks for you have regarded me as part of your family. You have been so kind, warm, considerate and full of love. I am really moved. Whenever you have any problem in China, I will definitely try my best to help. So will my whole family. I'm looking forward eagerly to your arrival. Sincerely, Mike.”
In fact we sent more than forty letters. But these are enough to express my feelings. I am looking forward to his arrival. If Lord could hear me, please bless us all, your glory upon us. We will be safe and lucky. Trust me, for these words I’m saying are true.
不得不提到一点的，便是Phoenix的Civic Centre Library。宽大的大门似乎是在欢迎所有人来遨游知识的海洋；高大而深远的内部则展示出一种对于各种知识、文化的包涵。巨幅的落地玻璃墙将外面宜人的风景和醉人的阳光透入到阅读者的心中；现代化的装饰充满了温馨的气息；环境优雅却不失生气……我相信，任何思想在这一环境中都会耀眼的火花。