Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I Have a Pen Pal!

When I was a child we received a publication in school called Weekly Reader.  There was a section in each issue for pen pals -- children across the world that would like to write to someone.  I was always intrigued by this activity and I tried but nobody ever wrote me back.  Well, now I have a real pen pal and she writes back!

Recently Elizabeth at Cornish Cream decided to organize a pen pal scheme for any of her readers that would like to participate.  I signed up immediately and after a few days I received an email from Elizabeth giving me the address of the lady she paired me up with.  I was excited so I sat down and wrote a letter -- a real letter -- right away.

This past Saturday I received my letter from my pen pal and I was thrilled.  Elizabeth did a great job pairing us up as we have so many things in common.  Her letter was lovely, she was very friendly and seemed very interested in having a pen pal as well. 

My pen pal's name is Mary and she is from the UK.  We have read each others blogs so we know a bit about each other already.  Mary is very thoughtful and has decided to give one of my favorite authors a try so she is reading "Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good" by Jan Karon.  I am currently reading this as well so I am anxious to see what she thinks of it.  We seem to like the same hobbies and are both fans of M. C. Beaton's character Agatha Raisin.

I think Elizabeth's idea of a pen pal is a great idea.  However, it has been a long time since I have written real letters and the process is so different than dashing of a quick email or a facebook comment.  It takes thought and time which I think is wonderful.  I think our lifestyles have made it too easy to scratch the surface of friendships -- with a real letter you have to sit down and concentrate on what you are doing to communicate well with another person.  I have found my handwriting has changed as well.  Since I don't write as often I feel like I have forgotten how.  My first letter to Mary I actually printed because I can't write longhand anymore -- my hand cramps up and it becomes illegible almost immediately.  The printing was better but oh my goodness I didn't expect that!  Hopefully I won't be printing forever but I am afraid I am going to have to actually practice longhand again.  Who knew!??

I just wrote my second letter to Mary tonight and it will go out in tomorrow's mail.  I am anxious to see what she thinks about the book and I am very interested in her Christmas projects.  I think she will be very inspiring and make me want to be more creative than I have been of late.

So, I am very excited at the prospect of making this new friend and going back to doing things "old school" because I think it is important.  This exercise has just shown me that while technology is great we can't lose the skills that we used to have.