You slip on your Crocs (the only shoes that provide comfort and keep your sciatica under control) and walk down to the mailbox.
You flip down the door and fumble around inside until you're able to grab hold of the massive contents and pull the big bunch of envelopes and fliers out.
You turn and head back to the house and as you walk you begin to sort.
There's a movie from Netflix.
An appointment reminder card from the dentist.
A credit card offer.
And an envelope that looks like an invitation. Excitedly, you rip the invitation open.
But, it's no invitation!
Inside, this is what you find....
|What would you do?|
Exclaim, "What in the world?!?" loud enough for the neighbors down the street to take notice?
Stand frozen on the sidewalk in front of your house for 3.4 minutes while your friends drive by and honk (and wonder what is wrong with you)??
React in such a way that your eyes nearly pop out of your head and your jaw nearly hits the ground???
Well, yes, I did a little of all that.
After I snapped to, I switched into Nancy Drew mode and inspected the envelopes very carefully. There were lots of clues! My little magnifying glass was lighting up red all over the place. (If you play the PC games, you know what I mean!)
First, the three one-hundred dollar bills had been neatly tucked into a cream envelope and addressed to "Mike-Dawn Our Last Name". It was stamped but did not have a postmark. Our last name was misspelled, too. Ours is a common American surname that is spelled uncommonly; most people spell it the common way.
Second, the envelope had been wrapped inside a piece of notebook paper with such precision that the paper edges lined up perfectly and then it had been placed in a larger outer envelope. It was addressed exactly as the inner envelope, like it had been copied directly from it.
Third, the outer envelope had been postmarked in Spakane, Washington.
What a mystery! Because...
...one, my husband never goes by Mike. The only people who call him that are those who presume that because his name is Michael he must go by Mike. This is something we always politely correct. He's not a fan of the shorter version of his name (nor am I).
Two, why the hyphen between our names? Why the matching envelopes with the stamp on the inner one?
Three, why Spokane? We know absolutely no one in that part of the country. NO ONE!
Nancy Drew has a few hypotheses. Would you like to hear them? (insert Nancy Drew PC game theme music here)
- One of the Korean families I tutor wanted to give me a bonus but didn't want to give it to me in person. Perhaps they hyphenate husband-wife names like that in their culture??? They mailed it to an acquaintance in Washington who was to put the stamped envelope in the mail, but misunderstood them and put it in a second envelope. It was wrapped in the paper with such precision because Koreans are, generally speaking, conscientious, precise people.
- Local friends wanted to do something nice for us anonymously. They wrote the hyphenated names, used "Mike", and misspelled our last name to throw us off their trail. They sent it to family or friends in Washington so it would not have an Atlanta postmark. I don't know why a second envelope was used or why the first was wrapped in paper in this scenario. Perhaps those are red herrings intended to keep us confused, too. We have also considered a family member could have done the same.
- International terrorists have devised a scheme to weaken the American economy. They have printed huge quantities of counterfeit money and are mailing it to unsuspecting citizens. As the funny money circulates, the American dollar will be further devalued, leading to the collapse of Western society. (This is also when I began to worry about it being laced with Anthrax.)
- A blog reader from the Spokane area, who has been blessed by my work, decided to bless me in return. She found my address and used two envelopes just to make it more interesting (because she reads my blog, she knows how overactive my imagination is and knew it would lead to a somewhat humorous post).
Nancy Drew can't figure this one out, folks. However, I have decided that I am not supposed to. Instead I recognize this as a provision from God. (It just-so-happens that we spent $400 on an unexpected repair the day before this money arrived in the mail. If we had remembered to check the mail the day before, we would have had it the exact day of the repair. There was no way anyone could have known we were going to spend the money in that way.)
If you are the one who sent the money, we understand your desire to remain anonymous. We want you to know, however, how much we appreciate what you did. It was so very nice of you, and we are grateful.
Nancy Drew wants to say thanks for the mystery, too! Although there is no final scene to this one where I connect the dots and say, "Ah HA! It was you!!" I have had fun trying to figure it out. :)