The Final Love Letters of Orizuru
Here is the rest of their story.
Although the exhibit has closed, I’d like to share with you the final love letters of the story. The first two letters penned by Élise and Henri can be found in the previous post.
So good to hear from you. Since finding your letter, I have said your name over and over in my head so many times, it’s like I almost know you. I will say that you have me wondering if you have traveled that same path by the mill…the one near the little houses. I stop there every day to admire the pink lilies. Maybe next time I’m there I will just call out, “Henri?” and if you’re nearby, you’ll know it’s me.
I must go, there’s a sale at the market and I am hoping to stop by the koi pond on the way, have you been?
I have seen many lilies, but I’m not certain about the little houses, but now I will be looking for them! Élise, do you watch the movies? Have you ever noticed that the male and female heroes of a movie are always in the same place at the same time, but they haven’t yet met? Do you ever think that is like us? I was at the market the other day and wanted to scream out, “ Élise”, but I didn’t. I saw a beautiful girl and wondered if it was you, but she was too buried in her phone to notice me across the way. I wish people would see what is around them…not just the occasional butterfly, but the beauty in the everyday wonders of humanity.
When will we meet, sweet Élise?
Henri! You were there? I hope it wasn’t me on the phone. I am guilty of not looking up sometimes. Maybe I was still at the koi pond, and I did stop by to see the cranes roosting, so maybe I was too late.
Don’t give up on this, Henri…we will find each other, maybe even over a bowl of strawberry ice cream! Myself, I like vanilla bean, but it’s best when drizzled with butterscotch!
I’m off for a few days, I fly into the clouds and will be back next week. I hope I can find your letter upon my return!
Always the best,
While you’re away I’ll leave you a short story.
Waiting for the train to work, I make up stories about the people I encounter. I like to think I’m able to peek into their worlds by glancing at what they’re scrolling through on their phone or listening in on their phone conversations. The other day I saw a woman whose story I started to craft in my mind – it went like this. She was on her way to meet her unknown love, she kept looking through her texts and smiling, but she wasn’t responding, only reading. Before I could finish writing her story in my head, my stop came up, and I exited, only to notice that she did too. I watched her cross the same street I crossed, and walk directly to the ice cream truck. I slowed down to watch this take place, and I heard her place her order telling the clerk, ‘I’d like to try strawberry, in honour of someone I may never meet.’ My stomach flipped, and I froze, then the clerk caught my eye and asked, ‘What would you like?’ I pretended to have to take a call and walked on. Élise…it was you!
I have returned to the most interesting story! Coincidence or the divine, we have now ‘met’ without one of us knowing it. I would like to know how you conjured up in your mind that the woman was on her way to meet a love she didn’t know. Did your subconscious want that to be me?
So now the big question is this – do we repeat our paths until they cross, or shall you find me near the truck again? Will you freeze again, and turn away, or can you show yourself to me?
I wish I had been more observant, but the ice cream was the most delicious I have ever had!
You are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. I cannot take your image out of my brain, and I continue to write stories about who you are. I don’t even know much about you!
I don’t know what made me freeze like that – you were within 5 feet of me, and I could have tapped your shoulder and said, “Elise, may I buy you an ice cream.”
If you are up for it, I will join you for your next ice cream at that truck, let’s say 6 pm on Thursday after work? I will wait for you there. I won’t freeze. Will you join me. We found one another at last.
Narrator’s note: Is this a story of two ships passing in the night, or will Elise and Henri meet?
Perhaps the ending lives inside of us all. Are we dreamers? Do we root for love? Or are our hearts sealed shut and find us not so hopeful…
Enjoy exploring Elise’s and Henri’s tiny world – but always be on the lookout … for you know not when someone might order ice cream in your honour.