Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Send Me A Letter

I was attending a training session last month and the instructor reminded us of the beauty of the good old letter writing. Yes, that type with paper and envelope (and not forgetting the lickable postage stamp made of gum Arabic).

It was not very long ago when letter writing was a mainstream communication channel. Today, its remnants can be found in the use of email. In case you are not aware, emails mean electronic mails and mails refer to the old fashion letters on paper. (Wouldn't it sound weird if they'd termed it eletter?)

Today, when I open up my mail box (I do not mean the virtual one), I still find many enveloped items. I do not feel the same excitement I remember I had when I received letters from friends and loved ones years ago (Oh! Must I be reminded?) These so-called letters are either fancifully enveloped or wrapped in official looking white PP envelopes. The former are dressed to entice you to part with your money and the latter usually contain harsh reminders that you must really part with your money. They do have more common names such as brochures or bills. Well, how can one be excited over stuff like that?

Occasionally, I do get a traditional looking letter with a self adhesive stamp (are they ever going to bring back the lickable ones?). I would usually rip up that odd one amongst the less welcomed regular bothers. What could it be? A letter from a dear friend? Nah! It would likely be an invitation note for occasions such as wedding, house warming or children's birthday party. Not really so exciting but, well, I would still allow these occasional surprises to spruce up my otherwise rather predictable life.

I am thinking... What if I walk into a stationary shop and pick up a real letter pad, and pen some sweet 'how are you' note to a friend? How would that be like? I do not think that it would be hard to come up with something to say. But there are probably other challenges.

First of all, I would have to look into my address book. No. I am not talking about my email address book. Well, <think, think> ... where am I suppose to get my friends' postal addresses? OK, this is sounding rather stupid but I would probably get from them via email. (Ya! So you think you are cleverer using SMS instead?)

Next, I would have to write my letter. Oh, did I say write and not type? How strange is that to have to write with a pen and not a stylus. Oh, man!

OK ... <grit my teeth> .... I can get pass that. Now I would have to find an envelop, preferably one that look less business like (not the Hello Kitty type, please!). I would carefully write down my friend's postal address as presentably as possible. <Sigh> Now I miss those self-addressed PP envelopes...

Finally, I would have to bring the letter to a post box. Well, I thought I have seen one near my house or have I? Opposite Starbucks? Hmmm...Never mind. I will figure that out somehow. Ahhh! Can't I just click SEND?!?

Errrr! This is looking harder than I thought. I am not sure if I will write a letter any time soon. Will you?
Gotta go and check my emails now.

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