It probably is not that far from reality to say the era of “pen pals” has passed us by. We communicate with many people every day via a multitude of vessels, e.g., phone, e-mail, blogs, tweets, texting and face-to-face (hard to believe at times), among others. Well, I was one of those youthful minions who actually did have a pen pal; I spent a great many hours writing to Mario Rupresario in his small community outside of Rome. Once I went to  college, communication ceased, until later in life when I visited Italy several times and
was able to meet Mario (and spend time with him and his family).

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