25 June 2014

#postcircle / Joys with pen and paper

My first #postcircle letters greeted me after returning from vacation!

There is something really special about the handwritten word: the tangible motion of my hand gripping my pen, pressing into the paper, the texture of the writing surface.  Over the years I've accumulated letters from friends who equally enjoy mailbox surprises, plus postcards from every corner of the world.  I'm not a clinical hoarder, but I do have boxes upon boxes filled to the brim with paper and ink.  (Thanks, Mom, for housing some of those!)

And while email, smartphones, tablets, and apps threaten to move everything to the digital, I'm stubborn and won't let go.  I currently keep up a steady exchange with a dear friend who prefers letters to emails for catching up (hi, I know you might read this!), and recently restarted an on going conversation with another friend.  Who could resist joy in the mailbox?

So when I learned about #postcircle this past spring, I jumped at the opportunity.  I first stumbled upon it when browsing Pinterest, coming across an image tagged with #postcircle.  Google then lead me to the lovely Miss Beatrix (known as Anna in the real world), who started this initiative to keep the wonders of letter-writing alive and thriving.

You can read all about how it works here, but basically she or her assistants (it's grown!) help to create groups of 6 people who become penpals.  That's about it.  By joining a group you're committing to writing whenever a letter arrives at your door (or box).  It's UK-based so I'm the only American in my group, Oyster, but the cost of international postage is a small price to pay for meeting 5 interesting women from Scotland to Cornwall.

It was such a treat to come back from a week away from home to find three #postcircle letters in my mailbox!  I read them in one of my favorite local coffee shops, Voltage, and my soy chai was a suitable accompaniment.

Looks like I will have to get out my pen and paper to catch up and let loose some more post to travel the seas.

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