Michele and Ginger both mentioned love letters in recent blog posts, and it's made me sit and think about the last time I really wrote a letter.

I used to be a prolific letter writer. I have a drawer full of interesting, pretty and artsy stationery, more pens than I care to count, pretty stamps, and colorful sealing wax, but do I use any of it? Hardly ever.

And I miss it.

I mean, I love the immediacy of email, the quick and breezy way we shoot text and pictures back and forth across the ether, but a tangible paper letter is a gift as much as anything made or purchased, and there's something magic about capturing a moment of time with paper and ink.

So why don't I write?

Well, first, it's really not fun unless someone writes back. As in all writing, feedback is better than chocolate. And second, well, I no longer have pretty handwriting. Years of computer use and wrist issues have combined to make my penmanship more like a doctor's scrawl than a calligrapher's script. It's embarrassing, really, because I've always felt that one's handwriting marks one, as much as how one speaks.

Sometimes I think it would be fun to recreate the experiment from my school days where we stuffed notes into helium balloons, and then released them to the winds, waiting with breathless anticipation for people to write back and tell us where they landed. Sadly, in our current state of paranoia, I fear such balloons would be shot to the ground with pellet guns, and tossed aside like so much trash.

If you found a helium ballon with READ ME written on it, would you react like Alice with her magic mushrooms, or would you go hunting for a set of sharp, pointy darts?

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