It’s no secret that I’m a big Twitter user, in fact I use social media a lot. It has enriched my life and made being a stay at home mum a little less lonely. One day though just before we went on holiday I made an offer to my followers, “who would like some real post?”
In this technological age where postal deliveries are being cut back to three times a week (in NZ) and chat is instant with the other side of the world it is easy to not post a letter or a card and let quick fingers on an iPhone and emojis say it all. But what are we losing?
It was enjoyable to write the cards and I had to think carefully what I wrote because I was still updating social media daily so they already knew what I was up to. What it led to was a more personalised message, more about how I was feeling rather than what I was doing, and the opportunity to ask them about themselves. Writing needs to ask questions of the reader and not just tell them about the writer.
I know how I feel when I get real post; the joy of finding a handwritten letter or card in the post box is great, and one of the most common things people said to me once they had received their postcard was how they enjoyed seeing my handwriting. I know what they mean. Handwriting shows you a lot about someone’s personality. After all we’re not all Times New Roman people, and thankfully we’re not all Comic Sans folks!
So, the real post has continued. More recently I sent postcards from New Zealand and I have received some real post back in return. I have a batch of post ready to go once I get to the Post Office. It is always interesting to see who gets it first. Bizarrely, cards I sent from Fiji have only JUST arrived in New Zealand (I was on holiday in September) but made it to the US in a week. I don’t think I will ever understand the rationale in postal times, but it’s fun.
Yes, it’s more convenient, cheaper and quicker to use the Internet but real post is fun.
I would meet people on holiday and we would correspond weekly via snail mail. I loved to receive the coloured envelopes but loved to send them too. I recently got back in touch with an old pen pal on Facebook. Considering we only spent one week on holiday together 25 years or so ago we still have a lot in common.
At university my then boyfriend and I would write daily. Yes, daily. We were in different cities and email was just beginning (but did exist) but writing was much more fun. I don’t have the letters anymore from all this correspondence but I remember there being boxes and boxes when I moved out of home from all of these years of writing to so many people.
So if you’re up for it ask people you talk to if they would like some real post. I’ve been using the hashtag #realpost on Twitter when I’ve been talking about it.
I think it would be great to have a pen friend again so applications on a stamped addressed envelope readers please!