Ever since I can remember, I have loved sending things in the mail.
That silly little thing you find in a kooky little store and just know your friend will enjoy.
The book you finish and mail to a fellow bookworm with just a post it on it, reading: “Read soon. Please. I have to chat about this with you!”
Mixtapes and mix CDs, back in the day.
Thank you notes.
There’s something so lovely about something arriving. Sometimes it’s fairly expected – cards on your birthday, at Christmas. Sometimes it comes completely out of the blue.
It’s always a joy.
Perhaps it stems from my days at boarding school, rushing back at breaktime to the manor house, peeking through the letter box, trying to catch a glimpse of a parcel or a letter with your name on. Then coming back at lunchtime when the house staff would hand out the letters and bundles. You always hoped it wouldn’t be Miss Q or Miss S – they liked to hide post, or to ‘confiscate’ it for a few days for some invented misdemeanour. Angry, harsh women, both of them. But Miss T or Mrs B would smile and pass the things right to you, or would commiserate with you on the days where nothing arrived. With family so far away, teenage me loved those letters, the flavour of home.
Now, in a world where so many things are becoming easy and instant, it’s lovely to have a medium that requires effort (the choosing of paper or card, the finding of the stamps, the trip to the postbox or the post office).
It’s also grand to feel part of a grand tradition of letter writers; Austen, Lee, Mitford, Dickens. Centuries and decades and years of pens on paper, salutations and sign offs. What a treat post is!