The proper definition of a man is an animal that writes letters.”
I collect stamps. They are bright, shiny, and tiny little masterpieces you can file away. I started as a child – and have never stopped. However the dearth of letter writing over the past decade has thrown obstacles in my path.
I miss letters. The peak of my letter writing was during my school years. Letters posted to friends overseas. Letters passed in class (that went on for pages and pages). Letters from family members. Pen pals. School chums.
The expectations you felt when waiting for a letter, the thrill of the post arriving, the weight of the pages in your hand – these have not been replicated within an electronic world.
Letters require thinking, rumination, consideration of what to enclose. The wait for snail mail requires comprehensiveness in letter writing, requires trimming of the extraneous. Text messages, emails can be shot off in a heartbeat, they demand instant response, they deal with the triviality of life. They are a conversation being shouted across the world.
They do not come even close to the replicating the feeling of writing a letter with your favourite pen on a piece of duck/flower/elephant decorated paper. To addressing an envelope. To affixing a stamp. To the sound of the ‘plop’ as the envelope hits the bottom of the mailbox.