Snail smile

When my daughter recently joined a residential college, our main grouse was that the only way we were allowed to keep in touch with each other was through the snail-mail.
It was like going back in time and I found the idea regressive. Likewise, my daughter, as a teenager may put it, freaked out. She thought lack of texting, mailing and chatting would drive her crazy and that she would lose track of all her friends.

Little did we realise that a whole new experience would open up for us.

My daughter left home with a heavy heart and in an age of e-mail and facebook, in the very next few days I stepped into a post-office. It was a strange feeling, putting pen to paper after such a long time. But, since it was going to be a weekly ritual, I thought I might as well enjoy the whole process. And enjoy I did. Words just kept pouring out of my pen, the daily mundane activities actually looked quite interesting on paper. A quote here, a one liner there and some pep talk, set things moving.

Since we live in a remote place, we have to collect mails ourselves. In these times of instant gratification I find myself eagerly waiting for  my daughters’ letters and this has taught me a great deal of patience. As for my daughter, along with patience I sense a lot of other positive benefits. Gone are the days when she could text inane stuff with instant messages flying across from both sides. In its place, a more creative, livelier form of correspondence is now taking place. A lot of thought and actually a lot of fun go into her letters. It’s filled with artistic icons like a smiley face here and a sad face there. I also notice a new wicked sense of humour. She has her own little codes (just incase someone took a sneak — peak at her letters) which only I can decode. She also keeps in touch with all her friends and they in turn take a break from their gizmos and write back to her.
Occasionally, when I miss out on my letter-writing my daughter who would otherwise have taken me for granted, writes back to say, how much she missed hearing from me.

There is something very intimate and personal about, what should I say...? A physical letter...? when compared to an e-mail or text. That anxiety, when you go collect your mail, rip it open and read is something, which especially the younger generation should experience and which I’m glad my daughter and her friends are discovering.

I finally realise that I’m being given a chance to bond with my daughter big time. What more could I have asked for?

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