I was clearing out a box of ‘stuff’ yesterday and tucked down in the bottom I found a small collection of ‘on the road’ tickets, receipts and so on from India.
These stamps too. Bet they aren’t even worth a sheet of loo paper now.Nice to see though. On this particular trip email didn’t exist. To keep in touch you wrote letters and in return hoped that when you got to a major town there’d be a letter in the Post Restante for you.
After all, it might have been 2 months since you last heard from friends or family.
I loved those times. Standing in a sweaty queue, with locals and other travellers alike. All, hoping…
They were great people watching opportunities too – the queues I mean. And the sense of anticipation was special. Of course, your letter could end up in the wrong box because the sender hadn’t written your name clearly. And you always had to ask that the boxes for both your first name and surname were checked.
My mother used to use a particular type of envelope and sometimes when there wasn’t anything from her for me, I used to scan the other boxes. I often saw one of her letters filed under some other letter from the alphabet by a postie having a bad day… But you didn’t fret this sort of thing. It was just the way it was.
But ahh, when ‘you got mail’! A mighty fine moment! I used to hold letters in my hand (never put them in a bag) until I got somewhere I could sit and read them in peace. Opening each one… Good news or bad? What’s been happening with family over the past months? A cheerful chat, or a rant from a mate? Good news about some kit you needed, info about your next visas, or…
Special moments. ‘Stamped’ in your memory…
Sorry, couldn’t resist that one!
You can find out more (but less awful humour) in Under Asian Skies.