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Ceefax (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Firstly, Hello, how have you been ?

Sorry its been a while, I’ve had Blog block !!! I think the weather has completely washed away all my creative thoughts, and turned them into a constant grey wet useless mess !

Tonight the Eureka moment happened !!!

One of the lovelies on (Yep you guessed it) Twitter, posted a tweet, which just read ” The lost art of the phone call ” to which I responded ” I miss a good old-fashioned hand written letter ”

Now cast your mind back twenty-two yrs, you can insert your own time travel wobbly arm sequence with retro music if it helps ! Before the age of the internet and social networking, and mass information at your fingertips, I used to keep up to date with news, music etc on good old Ceefax ! The BBC own teletext information service. Now many of you may remember this, for those who don’t, ask your dad !

On this wonderful service accessed through your tele remote, not unlike the red button, was a teen section, and on this teen section was a pen pal page. Young lads and lasses would write a paragraph about themselves, interests, music, sports etc, and would put out an appeal for like-minded teens to write in to be their pen pal.

This appealed to the thirteen year old me. So I wrote a letter, a real one on paper, about two paragraphs long, all about me. God only knows what I put in that letter, no doubt my love of all things prince,art etc, and I sent it into ceefax.

Then the waiting happened, things weren’t instant, it was weeks before I saw my request on-screen,and I waited again, nearly forgot about it when a large white envelope dropped on my door mat. I was so excited, it had Ceefax in big letters on it! Amazing I had replies from my pen pal request. I tore it open, quickly read the letter from ceefax , which read along the lines of ” congratulations some people have responded to your request and here they are !!”

I upturned the envelope and out fell one letter, just one, was I disappointed, no, this letter was so exciting. I eagerly read on, He (this was brilliant, it was a boy!) was from northern Ireland, a little bit older than me ( again amazing !!) and we shared interests like the love of simply red, and other trivialities, but I was hooked ! He hoped I might write back and let our pen pal friendship begin !!

I wrote back that same day, and from that point in we shared a lovely harmless written friendship. Funny thing is now, you would never alow your children just to give their address out like that.

We wrote sometimes as much as once a week, sent each other photos, really carefully selected of course, even after a while swapped phone numbers and would call about once a month or so, our parents probably wouldn’t alow more than that due to the cost ! We became really good friends, shared problems, relationship advice would exchange hand, ideal being the opposite sex, we even sent each other christmas presents.

Those letters where like gold dropping through my door, exciting , heart warming,funny, I would re read them all the time, and great thought would go into writing a reply. We went through school, a levels, and even to university for him, I never got that far. Ok the letters got less frequent as we got older, and as I got into a serious relationship with my (first!) Fiance. I invited my pen pal over to England for the engagement party, and bless him , some friends and his cousin turned it into a holiday and we met in person after years of writing.

My Dad said at the time,he didn’t really like my Fiance and said I should run off with the pen pal back to Ireland !!! I never told either of them that !!!

As things unfortunately do, mostly due to my part, the letters slowly stopped and we lost contact, every few yrs I would make contact again, and thanks to this new internet thingy after quite a long spell, I found him again on face book.

It’s not the same though. I miss the letters, someone taking the time to sit and hand write a well thought out piece of writing. Not just from pen pals as well, I used to spend many an hour composing very embarrassing love letters,and ive had on occasion some beautiful ones sent back. The raw emotion you can get off a love letter can be tangible, holding it in your hand, smelling the cologne that’s scented it, knowing it was in their hand. You don’t get that from a tweet, or face book poke!

I’m very lucky that my Mr6 still writes the most beautiful letters to me, especially when times are hard and I begin to doubt my worth. It’s the best gift you can give some one, a raw piece of you that’s only meant for you to see and not to be shared with hundreds of friends !

I would love to give out my address right now and see how many of you popped a letter in the post for me to delight over, but i cant do that.So come on people, write some one a letter, pour your heart out, share your problems, tel them just what they do to you, how they make you feel when they’re not around. Or reach out to a friend, which ever way put a pen to paper and let your soul do the talking .

with much love as ever Jo x