Monday, 10 December 2012

Letters by Hand

Do you hand write much these days? No, me neither.  Apart from cards, diary appointments and.... letters to my penpals. On the whole, I like to take time out to sit and write them a letter on paper, with an actual pen.

It worries me that the art of letter writing is going to fall the way of vinyl, cassettes and CD's. The younger generation being all a wash with no handwritten memories to hold on to. A recent conversation with a teen in my midst made me frown a lot. It was all about texting and facebooking -  what was the point of writing something if it was not school work? 

Now -  I am as down with the kids at the next, but there are some things I think should not die out.

That said,  I am also partial to a tippy-tappy-typed letter, usually when I have left it a long time between letters and I know that I am going to be scribbling for a long time. I am also fond of an email or 2. I have become firm friends with my penpals over the years, and I like the instant connection that email provides.

However, you cannot escape the fact that giving and receiving a hand written letter, full of slices of news from someone's life, in ink and to keep forever, is a grand thing. I have boxes of letters from past lovers (so pleased I didn't burn them along with the photos. Sigh) and pen-friends and I have lost many an evening after stumbling across a box of them. They are like a little window into the past. Not only about their lives at the time -  but also my own. With the answering of questions I must have asked in my last letter. 

From my early teens to now, from parts of the UK to Europe, Canada, Australia and the States, I would not be without my friends of pens. I have read about their loves, losses, new jobs, the beginnings and endings of relationships, children, marriages, pets and holidays. It is all there, bound up and kept safe in decorative boxes. 

Just waiting for me to unravel and revel in.

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