Correspondence over distance can deepen friendship

By Lnn Moncus

Although I see good friends every day, I also enjoy visiting with some of those who live at a distance, both via letters and by telephone. Mrs. Kathryn Stephenson is one such friend who now lives in Edmond, Okla., who writes wonderful letters and also has timeto laugh and reminisce on the phone. Although we have remained in touch since her move, we have now begun to visit frequently and to tell each other the latest news or to express our feelings about various subjects.

Many of you will remember her and her family as they played major roles in our lives and have remained good friends. Mr. R.G. Stephenson was our band director here for years and was later high school principal. He made it possible for a number of us to have band scholarships and to be able to complete our college educations. Quite a few of you will remember Kathryn as your high school English teacher and as an outstanding musician in our county.

She and I have exchanged many ideas about our feelings for our former students and certainly agree about how much we love and respect them. Just talking to her about our teaching experiences is most refreshing because she loved that profession as much as I even though she didn’t remain in it quite as long. I can hear the love in her voice as she talks about some of her students and can see why she feels as she does about them because I also know most of them although, as I point out to them, they are several years my senior.

Also, I enjoy listening to her talk because she uses our language correctly, often times leaving me in the dust because I have become rather careless during the last few years. She talks about her years in college and reflects her love of learning which has accompanied her throughout her life. I mention at times that I am both honored and surprised that she even speaks to me because she is one of the few people I have ever known who has a Phi Beta Kappa key and belongs to MENSA. Although I am most definitely not in her league, she has not really held my limited intelligence against me and even lets me know how much she cares. She is just one of those people who can meet us on our level and who has remained humble no matter how high she has gone.

As we talk or write, we both feel the friendship that has been so much a part of our lives in Quay County. Because she likes to hear about her former students and her friends of a lifetime, I try to gather a few bits of information to share and to give her something to think about so she doesn’t have to miss her home area so much. Because we both enjoy laughter, we tend to include humor in our visits. She knows I like to hear about her daughter, Libby, who was one of my students, and her son, Jamie, who always takes time to visit during Rattler Reunion.

Kathryn and I will continue our visits and will savor each word as we talk about our county and her people. As many of you have learned, I am just about the luckiest person in the world because I have a wealth of wonderful friends!