Growing up in a small town in Southern New Jersey

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Cards

I know I keep harping on the same subject. Christmas cards. This will be my last missive this year on this topic.

Well, I didn't get any written again this year, except as I mentioned before the ones to the grandchildren. I don't know how my mother did it. Except to say, as far as I knew, she didn't have arthritis in her hands (or anyplace else for that matter). If she did she never complained about it, except to say, she hated getting old. To that I can relate.

Writing the few cards I did write was not pleasant because of the arthritis in my hands. It's amazing though that keyboarding (typing) doesn't hurt, nor does playing the piano. I wonder why that is? I guess squeezing the hand and the way a pen is held uses different muscles, tendons, and pulls on the bones in a different way. And, oh yes, my dad would be so proud that I'm still using a fountain pen to write out my cards. I do prefer a fountain pen to a ball point or gel pen, but they are hard to find. I have one that is on it's last legs, I'm afraid, and my old Esterbrook is gone for good. Oh, I still have it physically, but the bulb inside into which the ink supplied was siphoned, wore out. I know of no place that replaces just that part of the pen, if it is replaceable at all. And all those extra style points I have for my Esterbrook.

If you don't know what an Esterbrook pen is, Google it, and for those in the family that read this you will remember my father always had an Esterbrook pen in his pocket, and he would, when using it, make a bit ta-doo about removing the cap, and swinging his arm to just so, and with a flourish would begin writing. I can see that so vividly. Dear daddy and his pens. He would have made a great President of the US at a signing ceremony.

I'm wondering, though, did my grands get the cards? Did the USPS do their thing and deliver them in a timely manner? I realize we've had snow almost every day since the beginning of December, and that may have delayed the cards getting to their appointed address on time, but I did mail them at least a week before Christmas.

I suppose in this day and age with IMs, texting, and e-mails -- and even e-mails are passe, aren't they, what with Facebook and Twitter -- getting mail may not be the thrill it was when I was a girl.

I longed for those cards at Christmas time, and birthdays. I was so pleased when daddy would allow me to open one or two of the cards -- the ones addressed to "The Drexler Family", and yes, especially the ones addressed to "Judith Drexler". Even though I never went by that name, all dad's family and former parishioners knew me by that name, thus, I would get cards at Christmas time to that name. If a card happened to come to Judy, or after 5th grade to Judi when I cut out the "th", I was thrilled. And I kept those cards in a special box for a long, long time.

Do children do that today? Do they enjoy getting REAL mail, mail delivered to their door, put in a special box, and affixed with almost a half-dollar's worth of stamps? Maybe when I see the children in a few days, I'll find out.


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