I write a few letters every year. Tucked in birthday cards or folded into Christmas packages. Smail, it’s called. It’s got my stamp of approval.
But mostly I just do it for any quirky reason, like Chocolate Eclair Day or Go Barefoot Day, mailing off a letter to a favorite teacher, a former mentor, a person who showed me a kindness that I won’t forget.
I want them to hold my words and thoughts for just a minute, maybe even stuff them in the back of a desk drawer to reread another day.
I love to rummage through an attic box or basement catchall and find human handwriting, never doomed to purging by some email software. Just words on paper. No text message. No email. No Twitter, Reddit, Instagram, Snapchat. Not a single emoji or LOL.
Sometimes I get a letter in return. Puts me on Cloud 9.
The letters between Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning are some of the most famous in history, revealing the couple’s deepening relationship and their plan to elope in defiance of her father’s wishes.
Even Charles Darwin, while he was busy formulating the theory of natural selection, found time to send beautifully moving letters to his childhood sweetheart, Fanny Owen.
They all used paper and ink. With remarkable success.
A dying form of communication, the letter seems hopelessly outdated.
But I think it’s *First Class.
When did you last write a letter?
Or receive one?
*The cost of a stamp just went down. What are you waiting for?