Word of the Day: Deltiology

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Why don’t people send postcards more often?

FROM THE DESK OF: Aiza

deltiology

noun.

  1. the hobby of collecting post cards.

About me: I collect postcards. I started collecting postcards in middle school and haven’t stopped. I love to send postcards. I love to receive postcards.

A few months ago, I found out that kids don’t know how to address mail anymore. Is letter writing a life skill not taught in school any longer? Sadly, I’m sure some adults don’t even know how to address a letter either. What happened to our world? I think the art of sending handwritten mail is forgotten these days. Instead people send text message or other chats. Even personal emails are far and few between nowadays. But let’s remember, there is a joy in receiving hand written mail that isn’t a bill or junk advertisement.

When I say I collect postcards, I’m not joking. One of my favorite geek out activities includes finding a flea market or antique shop and rummaging through piles of vintage postcards. If I find a postcard that speaks to me, I buy it. If I find one that reminds me of anyone in my life (ranging from co-worker, cousin, neighbor, sister), I buy it. For my own collection, I especially love finding a vintage postcard with an actual letter written on it. This tiny note is a glimpse into some stranger’s life. Voyeurism! I can’t stop myself from grabbing those marketing postcards next to a bathroom at a random bar or café. I.Can’t.Stop.

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Vintage postcards are always fun to find.

I take my postcard game serious. I need the perfect pen so my handwriting looks close to perfect. I always want to find a great stamp if possible. Sending a postcard is a mini art project and if you receive one from me know that I took time and effort to find it, write it out, stamp it and send it. All that care and attention just so you could go to your mailbox and have a surprise waiting for you.

Now, when I get a postcard, I let out a little eee-eee of happiness. I read it, stare at the picture on the front, examine the stamp and get excited for the sender’s adventure. I save EVERY postcard I receive. ALL of them. No matter if I haven’t said another word to you again in life or I speak to you every day. I have that postcard still and with every move I made to different cities and states, that postcard followed me.

I have tons of postcards from places I visited that I never actually sent to anyone. I keep these extras blank postcards as a reminder to myself of place I’ve been. It’s a little story of who, what, when and where that only I know. A reminder to myself of the life I’ve lived and the blessings I’ve been given.

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Postcards to remind me of places I’ve visited.

If possible, I make re-reading postcards a fun ‘back down memory lane’ event. The night before my cousin’s wedding, I busted out a batch of postcards we had sent to each other from middle school on. Her writings were funny and some of our jokes didn’t make sense anymore because our memory faded. Yet, in those postcards, years of our life shared in images and notes were documented in writing for us both to re-read and reminisce.

On that next vacation where you see a postcard for sale, go buy it. Send it to someone in your life. Bring happiness to another person, if even just for a moment.

This deltiologist will always be more than happy to send you a postcard too.

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Let’s show the next generation the fun of postcards.
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