In today’s time and age, everyone seems to be in a constant race with their clocks. Prioritizing activities is highly essential in order to skip the countless other mundane chores staring from our never-ending ‘TO-DO’ lists. ‘Spare time’ seems like a luxury for those who don’t get a second’s space to calm down, breathe and smell the roses.
And it is this ‘rush’ of life that seems to have taken away the charm of doing simple things. Like having a conversation with a friend for hours, looking through photo albums, enjoying a cup of coffee with family or alone and many such pleasures. If you ask me, reaching out to a friend today means a lot of stress. Even though we have countless avenues to contact one another, we still yearn for that personal touch. For this reason, I cherish the memories of a telephone call from a friend, a hand-written letter or a greeting card from a loved one over a long email.
Technology has given us a zillion options to stay in touch but somehow it always fails to express the emotion of the gesture. When the Blog-A-Rhythm group created the ‘Snail Mail Challenge’ about 3 months ago, wherein you get to send a hand-written letter to a fellow blogger and also receive one from another, I jumped at the opportunity. The catch of the challenge was that every blogger would be assigned at random, the name of the pen-pal, to whom they would write the letter. So I filled in my details, sent it across and waited patiently.
One fine day, when the Godmother’s (aka Shailaja’s) email sprung from my inbox, I knew it was time to bring out the pen and paper. :)
My excitement knew no bounds when I came to know that I get to send a letter to one of my favorite bloggers - Shilpa Garg. So much so that I ended up writing a 5-page letter to her. Not that there was a word or page limit, but once I started writing there was so much I wanted to share. I wrote to her about my recent vacation to Cincinnati, Ohio and the fun things that we got to do with our close friends.
In the end, as a surprise, I thought it would be a good idea to share my identity with her since pen-pal letters are meant to share our deepest feelings. So I sent her a photo of my family and my friends.
Once I posted the letter off to it’s destination, I couldn't wait to know whose letter would reach me. I regularly checked my mailbox and pestered LP to search through the envelopes in the hope that one would be addressed to me.
A couple of weeks down the line, a private message popped up on Facebook and I knew who sent me the letter. The scanned pages of the letter lay in my inbox waiting to be opened and my first reaction was a confused look. I got so caught up in the expectation of an actual letter that I missed experiencing the joy of actually having received one from my partial namesake (as she calls it :) ) - Inderpreet Kaur from Eloquent Articulation. Turned out that, while providing the address details at the start of the challenge, I had checked the option which said - ‘I am moving and can’t receive a letter’.
So I went back to the letter and learnt how Inderpreet had recently moved cities and in the midst of the pandemonium she had to write to me for the Snail Mail Challenge. Having moved 3 times across 4 states during the initial 2 years of our stay in US, I know how hard it must have been to stick to the deadline. At least in my case, it was just LP and me moving places but with a child the definition of ‘moving’ tends to go out the window.
I got to know a little more about Inderpreet through the letter where she went on to talk about her work, her 6-year-old son, how she would find it interesting to blog under a pseudonym on some occasions and how she loves the art of letter writing but finds it almost dead in the current scenario.
Inderpreet was so sweet to mail the letter to my address even though she had scanned and sent across the content. That indeed was a surprise. I was so happy the day LP handed the envelope to me and said - ‘This one’s for you’. :)
Before ending her letter, I did find an extra page written in letter that wasn't part of the email that she had sent over earlier. It felt heartwarming to read Inderpreet express her feelings about the blogging world and how it has helped her make quicker friends.
‘THANK YOU’ Inderpreet. We should definitely keep this association going on.
‘THANK YOU’ B-A-R for this wonderful challenge and helping me enjoy the art of letter writing again. The next time, I want to express my feelings with a loved one or a dear friend, I am going to write them a letter.
Do you love writing letters? Do share, I would love to know :)