Mari, four weeks ago at this very moment, I was sitting on this armchair trying to catch up on a couple of things, and you hopped up and wedged yourself next to me. Normally you’ll do this for a few minutes, a half hour at most, at which point you’ll switch to the ottoman and lick my feet, but on this day, you sat here leaning on me for hours. It made me really happy. You didn’t get up until you heard the door, signaling the time for your walk.
I think back to that day a lot. What if I’d changed the day of your walk? I’d thought about it — maybe move it to Wednesday instead of Tuesday? I was going to be in and out on Wednesday and home all of Tuesday… but then I thought, better to just keep you in your regular routine with your regular group. And I know this could have happened just as easily on Wednesday, in which case I’d be upset for breaking your routine — it wasn’t my fault or Andrew’s fault or Dina’s fault or your fault. In some ways, that makes this harder. We didn’t do anything wrong and we want you home, so why did this happen?
Mari, we haven’t been posting as much recently because we’ve been out a lot and otherwise we’ve been pretty exhausted. Yesterday I made a set of my weekly calls and Diana made a whole bunch of them, as well, which helped a lot. We postered more in the afternoon. We didn’t receive any sightings yesterday, but that didn’t surprise me. These are your hiding days. I don’t know precisely where you are, but I have a theory. I guess this is the week we’re testing our hypothesis, seeing if you do what we expect. I really hope so. We could use a break in finding you. And I hope we’ve covered these areas well enough that people know you’re out there and know how to approach you if they see you. We’re trying, girl. I sometimes wonder if we knew in the first week what we know now, we’d already have you home. It’s not a helpful line of thought — we had to learn how to look for you, and I’m sure there’s so much we still don’t know. I just want you back.
That’s really it, Mari — these are our days right now: calls, postering, long walks in places we’d never visited before, and writing about you. Your army’s doing the same. We’re getting more sightings and better sightings — clearly we’ve come a long way in the past month — but you seem to have gone an even longer way. We’re trying to catch up to you, Mari, and to keep up. Please let us find you.