Once upon a time there lived a young boy named Terrence McMichael O'Day.
One morning Terrence went out to fetch the daily mail. The young boy had been anxiously awaiting a letter from his dad.
The elder O'Day was an elephant salesman and, at present, traveling down the Amazon in a leaky, leopard-skin canoe.
“Danged infernal, defective canoe!“ Mr.O'Day muttered. “Can't tell where the spots end, and the holes begin!"
Terrence stood at the mailbox and nervously went through the daily allotment of overdue bills and credit card solicitations.
Terrence then held up a soiled and briny-smelling letter that was post marked from Egypt. It was a letter from his dad, and was given his immediate attention. Upon opening the letter, Terrence found a recent photo of his dad with Mr. Pickles -- his dad’s sample elephant and pickle aficionado.
In the photo, Mr. O'Day is seated in the stern of his leopard-skin canoe, and he is paddling. He looks strained and terribly exhausted. The hair on his head was one big, matted mess.
The elephant, on a contrary note, looked cool and unfettered -- nestled comfortably on his hindquarters in the bow of the same canoe, munching on savory gherkins. Terrence admired his dad's ability to keep the weighty canoe, and his dignity, afloat.
The letter read as follows:
Please forgive me for being late with my last letter. As I was about to post it, Mr. Pickles determined it was his turn to post the mail, and we struggled furiously over posting rights.
During our struggle, the letter was swept away by a sudden monsoon. Fortunately, Mr. Pickles and I were swept up as well, and the letter was never far out of our sight.
The monsoon -- unpredictable demons that they are -- dropped us, and the letter, off in Egypt. It took me forever to find a mailbox. It took even longer to find sandals big enough for Mr. Pickles. He refused to walk the desert without them. He has sensitive and nervous feet.
Once I had Mr. Pickles situated with sandals, we roamed the desert and managed to wander into a monstrous Amazon-bound sandstorm. They don’t have many of those in Egypt any more. We were lucky to have it.
I hope this letter finds you well and in good spirits, Terence. Mr. Pickles and I are doing fine. Unfortunately, Miss Howlings, my traveling secretary, fell in love with a sheik of some means and is now on her honeymoon in Madrid.
Mr. Pickles will now take on secretarial duties. And he’s none to happy about it. The typewriter is out of the question. But the dear boy proved himself a whiz with the quill pen.
I will sign off for now, and do plan on being home for your graduation.
With love in my heart,
Your world weary dad
PS. Let your mother know her letter will follow. Good bye, for now, dear boy.