Where Debbie Bennett is Marking the Occasion
Have I written here about Christmas cards? I’m not sure I have, but I lose track sometimes – having blogged here since the site’s inception, I’m fairly sure I’ve duplicated topics from time to time…
Never mind: Christmas cards. Or any other occasion cards, I guess. We got significantly fewer this Christmas past. I’m not sure whether that’s because 2020 is desperately trying to be the Year That Time Forgot, or if it’s simply that people just don’t write any more. Several of my friends send out email missives summarising the year for themselves and their families; others donate to charity in lieu of sending cards. And I know we’re all about saving the planet – but there’s something old-fashioned, quaint and just nice about the sending and receiving of cards to mark an occasion. It means that somebody has – just for a short moment of time – thought about you as they scrawled your name and address on a card and envelope. I know I do it; as I write each card, my mind drifts back to moments we have shared, moments/days/years, even, when our lives have intertwined. It makes me wonder what people are up to now and how their lives have changed. It’s good to reconnect with people you only ‘speak to’ once a year when you write a couple of sentences about your life (I think I can sum up 2020 in less than two sentences, anyway). I think it’s even more important when our lives have been so severely restricted these past ten months.
I’m not sure my daughter sends Christmas cards. Do any of the millennial generation? Or is everything online now – quick ephemeral tweets or social media contacts. I suppose when everybody is always contactable via their phone, there is no need anymore to make that extra effort.
And what about the actual writing? I always dig out my posh fountain pen to write cards – the occasion seems to warrant it. But I’m so used to a keyboard now, that stringing together more than a few sentences by hand is difficult. My hand aches with the strain of it and I’m aware of having to think much harder before I write, as words once committed to paper are permanent and the undo key doesn’t exist! And again – how do the youngsters cope when they use computers constantly and yet often have to take an exam by hand?
I do at least recycle cards – although I do tend to keep them for a year with the decorations in the loft. That way I can be sure I have correctly recorded (again by hand in my little black book) all changes of address and name.
So I will continue to send Christmas cards. And birthday cards too. To those people who receive them, be reassured that for a fleeting moment, you were uppermost in my thoughts.
Happy New Year!