THE LOST ART OF WRITING

The other day my mom was talking to me about how she and dad would send letters to each other while he was away and they had no phones or any such technology to use back then. She said that though she can talk to him anytime she wants now and does not have to wait a week for him to reply, she still misses those days when she would get so excited to see a postman ringing the doorbell, how my dad’s handwritten letter would bridge the gap between them, and how she would save them all and smile every time she re-read them.

Of course, now she has forgotten his handwriting, and deletes all his messages because of limited memory space in her phone. The love still exists, don’t worry about that.

Even though I have never really written a letter to anyone and waited weeks for their reply, I can still imagine how wonderful that would’ve been. Sure the wait is long enough to kill someone of suspense and curiosity, but the feeling of finally being able to touch the same paper your loved one wrote on would be just incredible. You know that the person has put all their thoughts and effort so they can say all they want in that mere sheet of paper. There’s so much meaning to it- and so much love. And when I compare that to the millions of text messages I send to people in a week, it starts to sound emotionless. The curiosity, the excitement, the suspense and love- with time, all their meanings have changed.

I’m aware of how easy the social networking sites have made it for people to communicate, but they are also, in some way, screwing up with our lives. It sure sucks when the person hasn’t been replying to your texts, and don’t even ask how bad it can get if he/she has seen the message, and yet doesn’t reply. You know when he/she is online, and you know when he/she last did. It’s like your life is no more yours- it’s public and open to all. Now compare it to this- you have no idea if he/she has read the letter, don’t know what the person is doing, don’t know when he/she would reply. It might just sound dull and depressing, but at least you wouldn’t fight over small silly things. No wonder, the relationships then lasted much longer than they do now- one reason why long distance relationships are such a pain to maintain!

Although technology has now made our lives much easier and comfortable, it has also pushed away a very important aspect of interpersonal relationships- the art of writing. It sure is the end of an era.

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