Monday, November 04, 2013

Memory is an unreliable narrator...

This past (long) weekend I further sorted out stuff that used to be in my bedroom so I start with a clean, clutter-free, slate when the new furniture arrives. One of these projects was throwing away the hundreds of postcards I had stored in a huge tin from IKEA over the past 20+ years. I didn't want to just empty everything in my recycling bin, but actually stopped to look at some that stuck out for whatever reason and laid them out on the floor to take pictures. It made quite a nice "patchwork quilt":
When I looked at the senders, I was in for a surprise. I knew that Amica would rank highly among them as we had quite a prolific exchange post-Erasmus in Dublin. I also got many more cards from Frida than I would have imagined, but then lots from a) people I seriously don't remember ever exchanging addresses with and b) friends that I have labelled as "not the writing kind". Well, I also had another reminder that I might possibly be going prematurely senile when I came upon a letter from a printing house in Frankfurt informing me that the poem (!) I had sent in had been accepted in their anthology. And this was only from 2006. Ooops. I was quite puzzled as I don't much care about poetry and would have sworn never having written one past my teenage years, least of all sending it in in a competition. Oh well... I did remember it once I read it. [Cringe]
I also found gems such as the card below from our postal services that made virtual Christmas greetings into hardcopy ones back in the early days of dial-up connections, thus somewhat defeating the purpose of electronic mail. No doubt I found this really modern and state-of-the-art back when I received this from my cousin and his girlfriend: 
It's quite a pity that nowadays I almost only receive snail-mail cards for Christmas and my birthday and can count postcards from faraway places I receive in a whole year with the fingers of one hand. Myself, I have also drastically reduced the number of cards I send from vacation and it has indeed become harder to find postcards and stamps when abroad.
Some of the pictures on the cards were downright funny. Snowed in mustachioed gentleman, anyone? Steve a.k.a. Ian Ziering from Beverly Hills 90210 (I loved this series, by the way!)? Queen Elizabeth II? Oh, and I also found a lovely lady with a mad stare and a brain on an autopsy table (sent by a German friend):
Thank you for joining me on my time-travels!

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