Hi Mrs. Kolczanksi! Boy, you look great today, how are you feeling? Are the nurses treating you okay? I bet they love having you here! You’ve got some setup here, eh? Nice TV up there in the ceiling and what a great view over there! What is that behind those trees? Is that a Wal-Mart? Not bad, Mrs. Kolczanski!
Listen, I heard things took a bit of a bad turn for you. I know you’ve lost the ability to speak and your mobility has become a bit of an issue. Can you write very well? No? The nurse told me that you were saying some strange things before your speech went, like one of your children came to visit even though he passed away last year. I guess it’s hard to keep everything straight, sometimes you don’t make a lot of sense, eh? Well, that’s okay! You’re a strong individual, you will be fine! I mean, you really do look great, and this place is fantastic. And you’ve got the Wal-Mart over there….
Anyway, I know I haven’t come by lately, but I wanted to talk to you. I wanted to discuss the night we met. There is something that’s been tearing me up inside about it, and I have to tell you. I know the circumstances were not typical or ideal, but you became a really good friend to me since then. It’s not every day that a guy like me becomes friends with the Car Wash Queen of Wichita. I mean, who could believe that could happen, right? It would take some extreme circumstances for an influential community leader to associate with a good-for-nothing schmo like me. No one could have predicted the end result, not even me. All of that said, though, I have to admit something. There may have been an ulterior motive in rescuing you from that house fire.
I know, that doesn’t make much sense. People help each other in times of crisis all the time. How could I, a ne’er-do-well from the wrong side of the tracks, have an ulterior motive in rescuing you from your burning home? You woke up, choking on thick smoke, flames burning the walls around you. Before you could react, I burst through the door and scooped you up and kept you underneath a blanket while I fought through the flames to bring you to safety. I risked certain death to make sure you lived to see another day. Why? Was it a selfless act? Temporary insanity disguised as bravery? A man with nothing to lose, trying to do one last good deed? Perhaps all of these.
Okay, Mrs. Kolczanki, I’ll level with you. I rescued you in the hope of getting free car washes for life! And at this moment, right now, three things are quite obvious. One, you came through with flying colors on those free car washes. Two, you sat through my entire speech just now probably expecting that exact admission from me. Three, you probably expect me to reveal that I also set the fire. And why wouldn’t you think that? I admitted to having selfish reasons for saving your life. You’re unable to talk and even if you could communicate, no one would really believe you because your mental state has recently come into question. It seems like the ideal picture was already painted for me to deliver that shocker.
But, no, I did not set the fire. As the investigators discovered, there was an electrical surge in the basement and some boxes caught on fire. Like I told you five years ago, I was driving by your home after a particularly rough shift at the bowling alley. And of course I knew where old Mrs. Kolczanski lived! Everybody knew you. But I saw the smoke billowing up to the sky, I saw the flames through the windows. And, I swear before holy God, my first thought was, “Free Car Washes!” So I busted through the front door and finally found you without a moment to spare! Who knew that when you asked what you could do to repay me, I would say, “How about free car washes for life?” and that you would actually grant it?
But your friendship over these years has meant the world to me, and that is no joke. But I just had to tell you that my true motivation that night. You need to understand the type of selfish human being I really am. I’m telling you this not only because of the guilt, but because I am leaving Wichita. I’m heading to New York to see if I have the chops to make it in a bigger town. I’ve come to say goodbye, Mrs. Kolczanski. I promise to write, but you won’t have to write back. I’m going to miss being inside of you very much, and I know you will too. Please take care of yourself.
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“I’m going to miss being inside of you very much, and I know you will too.”