One of my first travel memories was seeing a postcard come through our letterbox when I was a child in Bangor, Northern Ireland. As a kid, you ignore those boring brown or white envelopes and you are intrigued by colour so the postcard that arrived in the post caught my eye.
That postcard was from possibly Holland or maybe London, I can’t remember exactly but I kept it. Postacrds are the best and ultimate travel souvenir! Postcards tell a journey for themselves. These days getting an e-mail or a photo from a friend travelling will never mean as much as getting a postcard, which has been on a travel journey of its own. Hopefully postcard writing and sending is not becoming a forgotten art.
The last time I visited my family I sought out my travelling postcard collection that I had sent them – mostly to my youngest brother. The collection has now amassed postcards from over 50 countries – hundreds of postcards.
All bought in various shops across all seven continents (yes, I bought and posted a postcard when I was in Antarctica!), then written with details about what I did there at the time, then a stamp is put on them, then I find a post office or postbox and post them. Then the completion of the journey when my family receive the postcard. What an amazing journey.
One of the most pleasing things for me was buying, writing and posting a postcard at Port Lockroy in Antarctica in a cold hut, where there was thankfully NO mobile phones, NO internet and certainly NO other way to send home my special travel memory!
Young and new travellers might not remember the era before the internet and mobile phones and they may even wonder why people still bother to send postcards when an e-mail is a lot faster. However it’s the real life journey of the postcard and the physical element to it.
Spot the difference:
1. E-mail: E-mail v postcard. So I logged onto the internet and sent a quick e-mail.
2. Postcard: Postcard v. e-mail? A real life physical postcard is bought, written and posted. You don’t even need internet access!
Which one would you rather receive?
Don’t forget on your next trip you should send a postcard! A physical present. Sending postcards to friends and family really puts a smile on their faces and means a lot more to people than an e-mail.
I love postcards, don’t stop buying them, don’t stop writing them, don’t stop posting them and Don’t Stop Living!
To find more stuff like Lost art of postcards visit Jonny Blair’s hugely resourceful website Lifestyle of travel for more travel stories and advice.. This article, Are postcards a lost art? is released under a creative commons attribution license.