Thursday, 13 August 2009

The Pen, Paper & Post Project

I’ve been invited to participate as a lab rat in the OH’s latest experiment. We are required to pen a letter (yeah, just like the old days circa 1999) to the person we’re paired up with, and post it. We’re also required to give feedback documenting the experience and our thoughts and opinions on the experiment etc.

I’ve been paired up with the ever elusive jetsetter-slash-blogger, and a really cool guy, UJ. At first, I didn’t know what to make of it, because what exactly do you say to someone you kinda know but don’t really know, y’know? Anyway, deliberation lasted all of 2 seconds and once my pen was on that note pad, I couldn’t stop. It resulted in a 3 page letter…poor UJ. He’s going to have to take time out from that hectic schedule of his to actually read my letter, maybe even take half the day off from work.

I like writing weird and spunky letters and well, there are a few surprises in that envelope. I won’t divulge all the details here (not until he gets the letter), maybe UJ will blog about it or give the necessary feedback to the OH, and then everyone will know. I had a lot of fun doing it, and purely because I didn’t want to overwhelm the poor guy, I decided to keep my weirdness and spunkiness to a minimum.

The whole process reminded me of how much I love writing letters. In high school, and university as well, I had several pen pals from all over the world. I used to love writing and receiving their letters, hearing from them, being a spectator in their lives. I used to get so excited to see post with my name on it. Ah, the good old days.

Even today, I still have one pen pal (even though I have her mobile number, her email address and we’re friends on Facebook)…I met her in London in 2004 and I knew her for all of 2 weeks before she left to go back home to Germany (I love the Germans, they’re always so engaging, friendly and polite and every German I meet wants to be my friend). She’s an artist, a painter and violinist and has since moved to Italy, then to Iceland, then back to Germany, then to Austria, back to Germany again etc. Our letters follow each other wherever we go and it’s been like that for the past 5 years.

So far, this experiment has been a very enjoyable and gratifying experience. So much so, that I’m welcoming anyone who’s interested in writing to me to send me their postal details on email. I’ll return the email with my postal details.

I look forward to the day I get to write a love letter, sappy poetry and all. But I’d have to be married first because there’s no way in hell that I’d take the risk of having my innermost thoughts and feelings exposed on every major networking site because of some disgruntled moron. Marriage means that love letters can be written and shared and that the only people who will uncover your secrets are your nosy teenage kids whilst rummaging through your drawers and cupboards looking for money to go to the movies while you’re out...or your nosy adult kids who have the miserable task of packing away all your belongings after you’ve passed on. But by then you’re dead, so who cares.


  1. Azra wrote: "I look forward to the day I get to write a love letter, sappy poetry and all. But I’d have to be married first because there’s no way in hell that I’d take the risk of having my innermost thoughts and feelings exposed on every major networking site because of some disgruntled moron."

    Come on - we want to see you be vulnerable here on-line. We're you're friends. We'd never laugh (snicker) at your innermost thoughts and feelings....

  2. It was weird having to write after yonks. There was no spell check!
    I took a break between writing to update my FB status because I'm ADD like that.
    Posted the letter yesterday, girl at PostNet said it will take between 5 - 10 working days! It takes 10 to courier something from the States here!

  3. I'm glad everyone is having fun. Its an experience. And I think once you have a chance to order your thoughts it feels a lot different to say knocking off an email for instance. I realised my hands arent pen friendly anymore. Sure I can take note or write down shit but as for writing a letter I mean how do you survive three pages.

    Also with emails you know someone will read it but its seems so flimsy when you feel your words on paper. makes you scratch out things and rewrite shit.

    And thank you. Both of you. I really do appreciate the fact both of you got involved. So lets see what happens.

  4. Love getting letters too...I was just thinking today about how I'd like a pen pal.

    Neat blog :)

  5. the AD hasn't sent me her address..

  6. I too have several pen-pals from all over - Germany, USA, Spain. I found them when I was twelve, and have stuck by them ever since. I agree with what you 're saying, it's quite a thrill when I see an envelope addressed to me.

    Great blog you're writing! It's fun reading every time you post.

  7. LL - lol, I'd have to have a temporary mental/emotional breakdown before I go posting those thoughts that hibernate in the corners of my mind :D

    Nafisa - Like everything else in the country, the postal service is ridiculous. They are the reason people stick to email.

    OH - I find that I'm slightly more formal on paper than I am over email :P
    And I like to talk so I can write entire 10 page letters and it would be nothing for me :D

    Elizabeth - Thanks for dropping by :) Hope you get your penpal...

    Mash - I hope you got her add by now.

    Little Mermaid - Thank You for your kind words. Your blog is cool too :)