In the age of Postcards

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Souma remembers the romance of letters (snail mail these days) and misses its enigma in the era of advanced technology, exclusively in Different Truths.

I was in class three when I was introduced to postcards. I still remember that yellowish card with a tiger face as the stamp at top right corner. Six nos. of boxes provided for the PIN. Those six numbers were magical numbers. Those numbers along with the address can take your letters anywhere.

I was really surprised how people know every place and every address in this world. Isn’t it surprising? No GPS, no Google maps yet the letters reached the destinations.

In the afternoon, when the postman rang the bell, I would jump off and rush to receive the letter. Each letter brings with it some hope, some surprise and enlightens us with something new. With the advent of technology, the element of surprise is lost. The letters started with the customary blessings and continued to the main body. Landline telephones were rare in such times and our relatives and friends would express themselves in letters.

What I really feel that I have missed in those times is a love letter. Imagine yourself waiting for hours and days for that very important letter.  One message for a particular day whereas imagining nowadays people are constantly online with their friends. Further really matter was the personal feel in the writing that we seriously miss these days.

For some, letters would bring news of new job appointment. Imagine the rush of adrenaline when one opens the letter and finds that he/she has got a new job. Sometimes people would constantly chase postmen and sometimes post offices for that letter of hope. Something they hoped they will get their dream job but may be the letter didn’t reach them because of slackness of service. Imagine that after chasing for days and weeks finally you get that letter.

Imagine being a soldier in the Indian border outpost. You wait days in and days out for that letter from your home. On the other side, the soldier’s family also wait for the Jawan’s letter- a sign that he/she is still alive and thriving.

New Year and Diwali cards have lost all the significance now. We receive electronic cards or messages now. Earlier we used to carefully choose cards for every occasion. The message inside the card was so much important to us. If the message didn’t suffice we wrote in the cards with colourful pens.

As we have become more and more tech savvy, we have come closer to each other. But our life has become too complicated. Even if we have means to easily communicate, our feelings have become artificial and are not authentic.

Friendship now is the friend request button of social networking site. Networking has become so important now but bonding is becoming less important. Hope technology comes up with something that also carries human values and emotions.

©Souma Roy

Photos from the internet.

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Souma is an electrical engineer in Kolkata. Six years of work experience has given him ample opportunity to come close to the city. He likes writing blogs, travelling and writing travelogues.