"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Holiday mail, real gifts

"Worth the walk," today's  5 x 7 #watercolor card
Holidays bring real gifts, real mail from real people with real handwriting.
So refreshing in these days of impersonal digital messages, canned corporate wishes, and an unending deluge of either digital advertising, or catalogs and ads and business offerings disguised as personal mail. My first stop from the mail box is at the trash can outside, to dispose of almost everything before entering the house.
But the rare handwritten envelope from friends or relatives is eagerly opened, and memories and faces and places come back into present tense.
Such gifts. Remember when you anticipated going to the mailbox for just that  reason? 
We may be long past that now, compared to earlier years. I have boxes of old letters and postcards sent from my parents or uncles to their kinfolk, and some letters and cards sent to us. They're yellowing now, and the dates and price of stamps bring nostalgia.
But I can browse through them and hear my parents' voices, or other relatives, and receive the gifts all over again.
As we plunge deeper into the digital whirlpool, such cards and letters become even more treasured, because they're tactile and personal. They really take very little time, but only forethought and a little planning, and lift both the receiver's and sender's days with a smile. 
What gifts, anytime, not just in a season of giving.

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