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An excerpt from my own version of Dear Mr. Henshaw

By: Emily Chu

Dear Mr. Henshaw,

You asked me in your last letter to write about my daily life, so here I am with another story.

Accomplishing something feels great, even if it’s as simple as climbing monkey bars. At first, all I could only do was skip one bar at a time, which I felt proud of at first, but then several seven-year-olds came up and showed me that it was nothing. They were literally doing gymnastics on it. They eventually left, probably because they don’t have any more tricks up their sleeves, and I’m standing on the platform once again.

After a few more tries skipping one bar felt easier, almost as if now my hands were used to doing it. Now sure of myself, I tried it again, except now I skipped two bars. I felt very happy about myself. I’m sure I was definitely going to reach the end and become the greatest climber of all time. But I did end up falling on the dirt. As expected.

I wonder why this is called a monkey bar. Maybe because your arms need to be like a monkey’s to climb this. No wonder I can’t do it. I’m not a monkey after all. Feeling better, I decided that being like a monkey (not transforming into a monkey, mind you) could help me in situations where I am stuck in a rainforest and panthers are circling beneath me (if you haven’t noticed yet, my brain pops around a lot). So, I decided to try again, and surprisingly, luck seemed to be on my side, meaning that I got to the other end.

If I were to race a monkey in climbing monkey bars, who do you think would win? Personally, I think I would. Perhaps the monkey wouldn’t realize it’s a race and just sit there. Or perhaps the monkey would be too bored to race me, anyway, considering how bad I am. Or perhaps I would never have to race a monkey in the first place, which puts me at a big advantage. It’s time for the race to begin, I thought, imagining a monkey was sitting next to me. I started off, and not surprisingly, fell again. “That didn’t count,” I said to the invisible monkey. “I wasn’t ready yet.”

And so we started off again, and I won, partly because the monkey was invisible and partly because it didn’t move at all. But nonetheless, I conquered the monkey.


Your friend

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