Wednesday, September 8, 2010

You've Got Mail!

Yeah…how many of you remember the excitement of hearing that announcement when you received an e-mail waaaaaaaay back in the day! I thought it was the coolest thing and I usually only had ONE item waiting for me (unlike today where my inbox is filled with more things than what I really want)!

OK, so let’s go a little further back…

Do you remember when you first started getting your own mail? Maybe it was a party invitation from a classmate, or you might have received a letter from one of your cousins with pictures enclosed. Best of all, maybe a birthday card from your favorite Aunt (with money to boot – woo hoo!).

And in most cases, you would respond back with a return letter or a proper thank you note.

Now, stop a second and think….

When was the last time you received something personal via the good old US Postal Service? No, I’m not talking about your very own electric bill. I’m not even talking about your very own, personal “To Our Neighbor” ads.

Or when did YOU last send something to someone by mail?  You remember those blue mailboxes, right?

I’m talking about a REAL hand-written letter.
An invitation.
A postcard even?

Did you know that in the Victorian Era, part of good upbringing and education included learning how to write a proper letter? Good penmanship was a sign in society of “fine breeding”. Even the choice of paper and pen used was of utmost importance in making a good impression. Letters were written very carefully, they were very detailed, and were never sent out without re-reading the letter before sealing the envelope. In this time in history, even though typewriters were available, it was considered “vulgar” to send a type-written personal letter.

I wonder what they would think of our modern methods.

And how many times have you pushed “send” without taking even a second glance? Ooops….

Don’t get me wrong. I totally love technology, and even though I’m not very tech-savvy, it still excites and entertains me with thoughts of what things will be like when my kids get my age.

But along with the all our new-found knowledge, I think we’ve lost something.

The smooth feel of parchment paper…

The sound of a pen scratching as we write our thoughts…

The excitement of folding the letter, sealing the envelope, stamping it, placing it in the mail slot...

(The aggravation of realizing that we left something out of the envelope… just kidding!)

Then there is the anticipation of our letter being received, read, cherished, and tucked away to be read over and over again…and of waiting for something in return.

How would it make you feel to receive something by mail, personally hand-written just for you? How would it feel to open the mailbox once in a while and find among the bills a beautiful envelope with careful, elegant hand-writing – maybe it would even have been spritzed with a lovely perfume to remind you of the person who wrote it?

I think it would be grand…I think it would make me feel special…I think it would make me feel like someone took real time out of their day just for me.

I think I’ll go write some letters…


ZippyChix said...

The mail box and I are getting reaquainted lately as my first has gone to college. All of a sudden she is checking her mailbox and expecting regular amounts of mail from me. Emails apparently aren't cutting it for my techno savvy child....hmmmmm:)

Doris said...

Oh my goodness, that is so cute! I don't think I would have even heard from mine had it not been for amazing ability to text while doing nearly anything else (skeeeery). But maybe I'll surprise her with a little treat in the post box.

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