Taking Tea in the Kasbah

Dear Tami,

You’re absolutely right. I can hardly believe it has been a whole year since we began our correspondence. Have we really sent 52 letters back and forth every week for an entire year? It doesn’t even seem possible. Not that I doubted you or your maths skills, but I had to take a look for myself.

photo credit: AtomDocs via photopin cc

photo credit: AtomDocs via photopin cc

As I was going through the drawer in the kasbah where you keep them, I not only confirmed there were 52 letters, but I also discovered a common thread in our missives – that of dispensing advice to one another. Over the past year, we just loved giving each other a bit of encouragement and direction and we did it often. You, for example, liked to give me career advice, such as when you sent me three potential movie script ideas in which I would need to use an American accent. Dare I ask if you’ve finished any of these scripts, like Top Grease – The Musical?  Not that I need to take on any more jobs at the moment, but if you had written one to completion, I hope I’ll be the first to receive a copy.

I found Shoshana's postcard to you. She's getting on well in the U.K. since entering the Unicorn Witness Protection Programme. You're welcome. photo credit: Dita Actor via photopin cc

I also found Shoshana’s secret postcard sent to you after I successfully got her into the Unicorn Witness Protection Programme. She looks like she’s getting on well, don’t you think? photo credit: Dita Actor via photopin cc

When the support was flowing from me to you, I offered you encouragement on your writing. I also suggested you should dance whenever life was getting you down. Dancing, as we both know, is a great solution for just about anything. Good thing you’re installing those disco balls in the kasbah and the writing cave. 

photo credit: Irene Miranda via photopin cc

photo credit: Irene Miranda via photopin cc

Speaking of the writing cave, looking for it and you giving me clues that weren’t actually clues was another thing we discussed in our letters to each other. Obviously. I don’t think we need to discuss how after a year of searching I’m really not any closer to finding it. As you like to say, let’s just leave it at that.


photo credit: Nicki_S via photopin cc

photo credit: Nicki_S via photopin cc

Another topic you loved to write about was your delight in donning your disguises in order to throw me off the trail to the cave or to just mess with me, both of which happened quite often. Then there’s the adventures on which you sent me, like heading out on a lake in a canoe to go weequashing with Prickly Pete, embarking on a mysterious underground adventure in New Orleans, and going to the cinema in a padded suit and then getting rescued by Cat Woman when I couldn’t extricate myself from the seat. My sense of adventure certainly served me well this past year.

And then there’s the pièce de résistance, your latest gift to me on this one year letterversary:

After a quick skip across the pond in a plane

Your journey will continue by car, plane, or train

Go over the mountains and through the wood

Heading towards the setting sun ’til you’ve gone as far as you could

And then hang a right to the valley of rain.


Clearly, you’ve not lost your cheeky sense of humour. Nor is there a shortage of clues that really aren’t clues to the writing cave’s whereabouts. Nope, no shortage there.

One thing we’re both short on these days is time. I’ve noticed you’ve become increasingly busy as of late, especially as you approach The End of your manuscript. I’ve also been incredibly busy, going from job to job with hardly a moment’s pause in between to breathe. I think you’re wise to suggest we scale back on the frequency of our letters for now and write to each other whenever the mood strikes. A random schedule will suit us both well. We can be more spontaneous this way.

Also, it leaves more time for impromptu (naked) dance parties, practising our accents, perfecting your disguises, searching for the writing cave, and going on adventures.

You know, the important things.

Prolifically yours,



*Editor’s note: The views, ideas, and opinions expressed in the Letters from Benedict series are works of fiction and did not come from the actor himself. Obviously. This series is just my ridiculous way of expressing adoration for Mr. Cumberbatch and his work and is not intended to be taken or read as a true collaborative writing endeavor with him.


10 thoughts on “Letters from Benedict: On Spontaneous Missives & a Letterversary

  1. Oh, wow…has it really been a year already for this particularly series? Congrats! You’ve done a terrific job keeping each installment interesting and fresh 🙂

    • Thanks, Mike! It’s weird to think I started this series a whole entire year ago. I started it as a writing challenge for myself to see if I could write a letter based on a previously sent letter the reader never sees. (Well, that and it was a good excuse to always be up on what a certain classy British actor was doing.) After a few weeks of weekly letters I challenged myself to keep it up for a whole year. And so I did. 🙂

  2. I can’t believe it’s been a year, either. Amazing. And now that the letters are going to be more infrequent they’ll appear like little random flecks of gold in the blogosphere. Something to look forward to. 🙂

    • That’s so nice of you to say! Thanks, Ellen. I love the imagery you paint. I only hope I can live up to it. 🙂

  3. Congratulations, Tami and Ben, the quirkiest pen pal duo I’ve ever witnessed.
    (Also, the only pen pal duo I have witnessed.)

    Ah, the disco ball. Need to hang one in my kitchen. Or perhaps a set of two or even three in a row, over my island. Nothing like a little glitter ball glittering while slaving over dinner.


    • Thanks, Sherry! Quirkiest pen pal duo? Really? You flatter me. There are other adjectives I use to describe the letters that are not so complimentary: Odd. Weird. Wacky. Delusional. Take your pick.

      A disco ball in a kitchen is such a GREAT idea. I wish I’d thought of it. I may have to follow suit.

      *Note to self: always consult Sherry when redecorating, especially when it comes to disco balls.

  4. One year?! Time flies with the vicarious fun of reading the correspondence between you two. Saturdays were my favorite for that very reason. But I understand the need to scale back in frequency. That your correspondence continue in some fashion is what’s important! Cherrio! Carry on! And remember … all’s fair in love and seeking out the writing cave!

    • Thank you, Elizabeth, not only for your kind words, but also for being among the handful of kasbah readers who comment each week on these odd little letters. Warms my heart to know you’ve been having some vicarious fun reading them.

  5. on ,
    Marcia said:

    Happy Anniversary Tami and Ben! Wow, what an adventure it has been. Still enjoying the ride! Cheers.

    • Many thanks, Marcia! So glad to hear you’re still enjoying – and along for – the ride. 🙂

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