Maybe I’m nostalgic because reading letters from 17 years ago, well, brings back many memories, but, I miss getting letters in the mail. I remember the anticipation of walking to the mailbox and hoping to receive news from my family and friends. None of us had email, and my parents didn’t even have a phone when I first moved away from home. So, the main means of communication was sitting down and writing a letter, putting it in an envelope, licking it, taking it to the post office to get the seal or a stamp, and then hoping/waiting for the mail to arrive to its intended recipient. The wait usually took a couple of weeks, but the happiness the letters brought would last much longer!
Don’t take me wrong – I love how technology has revolutionized communications! Pretty much every morning I simultaneously chat with my mom – same time zone but different continent – and with friends who live 8 time zones away! And if I’m missing any of them more than usual, I log on to Skype and we can enjoy our smiles via video chat.
But today, when I sat down to unpack one more box, I time traveled to a different era – an era where a love letter was actually a letter, something tangible you could put under your pillow to feel close to the one you were missing. An era where letters from siblings included drawings and sketches and not smileys and emoticons. An era where the words not only transmitted thoughts but also smells transferred from the hands that wrote it.
Friend, don’t be surprised then, if you walk to your mailbox and find a letter from me – I’m just a bit nostalgic.