Saturday, 22 August 2009

Memories of letters gone by

Did you have pen pals when you were young?

I had several. Most of mine came via an Australian magazine for children called Junior Clubhouse.

I mention this because today as I was going through some of the things I have had packed away in boxes, I discovered some of the letters that I had received. In particular the ones from 2 of my cousins and a girl from Tasmania.

I didn't read through them all as I didn't have the time, but I did open a couple for a look. Some were folded in fancy ways, others were written on different note papers. But the main thing about them is that they were all hand written.

I think I really miss that connection. I realised recently that I have a whole drawer full of different sets of writting paper, but I never use them. These days my connection with people is usually via email and other electronic media. The sentiments are the same, but they feel rather impersonal.

With the amount of writting paper in my posession I think I should start writting letters again.

One benefit of electroinc mail is that you don't have to have a physical storage location for it (other than space in the memory of your computer or online email service). Another is that the ink will not fade so that you cannot read it. But what if your computer crashes and you lose it? Then it is gone. I suppose the same could be said for a fire or flood damaging the stored letters.

What do you think?

The other thing I wondered as I looked through these letters, is what has become of my former pen pals?

I know what my cousins are doing, but what of the others. I must of had at least 5 or more people who I regularly corresponded with.

Where are they now? What direction has their life taken? Are they still alive? Have they married and had a family, or are they still single like me? Do they still live in the same town?

Since I received some of those letters I have moved 5 times.

If anyone reads this and has had pen pals in the past please let me know your thoughts. You could be one of my former correspondants, and I would love to know where life has taken you thus far.

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