Some days back, my friend Shailaja also spoke about it and sowed the seed of letter-writing in my mind. It brought about a flurry of memories of my adolescent life, when everyday on returning from college, I would check the mail-box for a letter from a cousin or a pen-pal. And, the sheer joy on finding one was incomparable! I remember, how we wrote lengthy letters to each other. Then, there wasn’t much to life, as it is now. There was college and studies and friends; maybe a movie or two thrown in for weekends. But, our letters would have so much material in them, that reading those would take a long time. I have treasured those letters from all those years ago and go through them every now and then, reliving those wonderful days of simplicity and an uncomplicated life.
Today, Facebook helps us meet old friends and strike a fresh bond with them, resulting in exchanging of messages. The messages are longer than in Whatsapp, but, there is something missing there, as well! The feel of the paper, the smell of the ink, the eagerness to slit open the envelop are all missing. The writers spoke through their handwriting, each one exclusively different from the other. Those colourful letter pads, the Inland letters we bought from the post offices, the post cards, all of which we used to pour our hearts out, are all missing. And, all of these can not be found or felt even in video-calls, or should I call it, Skype?
Writing this post has strengthened my resolve of beginning to write to friends and cousins and enjoy the joys of writing and receiving letters. Call me old-fashioned if you like, but that’s how I am! All I will have to do is coax my darling friends and cousins to shed off their laziness and write a letter in response. Just once. And, then tell me how they felt. I am sure some will like it, even enjoy it!
So, friends and dear sisters reading this post, wait for my ping on Whatsapp for an invitation to experience a forgotten tradition from our childhood. Go out, buy some of those lovely letter pads and pens (yes, you will need to buy those as well!) and get ready to dash off a heart-warming letter and relive a few moments of that bygone, golden era!
And, stop making faces!