Letter Writing Inspiration for Tonight's Letter Writing Club at the Shop
Our Letter Writing Club is tonight! I usually try to do a reminder post a few days earlier so people have time to think about whether or not they can make it, but of course I forgot - I do hope a few of you can still make it! Last month was one of my favourite Letter Writing Club meets to date: we had a bunch of great people, but also a few familiar faces that I hadn't seen in a while, including one who had just returned from spending a few months sailing around on a boat. I waffled between being happy to see him and wishing I knew how to sail a boat myself. That's the life, I tell ya. It's sort of nice to think that we've been running this club for around a year and a half now, and to think we've had enough writing days that we can have familiar faces.
I think another one of my favourite things about these letter writing nights is that we sometimes get people who just like letter writing, but who haven't ever tried a fountain pen before, although I think letter writers all have a bit of their soul still living in the analogue world - fountain pens were sort of made for letter writing. It's always so much fun to see their reactions, especially as they try pens from my pen roll with different colours of ink and different nib sizes, thinking wow this is nuts, until eventually they realize they do have a preference for broader, inkier nibs, or purple ink or that neon lime pen colour. In some ways, if they were actually shopping for a fountain pen, it would be better to come into the shop with someone behind the counter showing them with tester nibs of different sizes and different brands, rather than just the varied and few and random ones I have in my pen roll, but it's a different sort of vibe - just sitting down and writing letters for fun, trying a few pens out over treats and coffee and a cat darting around and sniffing in people's bags. I almost never finish the letter I start at the beginning of the club - I get too involved in conversations, or maybe just involved in my egg tart - but you know, it's a good effort all around.
***Just in case you needed some inspiration for your own letter writing, whether or not you can join us this evening, I thought I would share one of the best things I've received in the mail in a long time (and running a stationery shop means I get some pretty cool things in the mail sometimes). From one of my favourite pen pals, who I think is a kindred spirit (and not only because she and I share a few key demographic similarities), this surprise landed in our mailbox. I wish I had kept the envelope, which was just brown paper packaging shaped into letter sized rectangle, and sent through lettermail - it's incredible the things that you can actually send through the post! These two tiny, hand-knit socks for Caleb's tiny and smelly feet. I just love receiving surprises inside letters. It's just such a fun and lovely and wonderful moment in your day, to see something new in the mailbox, and not just an "ordinary" letter, although I'll take those any day of the week. Best of all, Caleb loves them. Like is all about putting them on and sliding around dangerously on the concrete floors with them, and putting them on before eating his breakfast. I think maybe because I personally almost never wear socks - I wear sandals or Birkenstocks until the snow really sets in, and then I basically stay inside for the rest of the winter since my commute to work is through a doorway, and I am a spring flower - but Caleb also rarely wears socks. He puts on and takes off his shoes on his own (he doesn't wear shoes in the apartment, but needs to put them on to enter the packing area), and it's always seemed easier to have him sockless, but I think he's discovered that socks, apparently, can be fun. Getting these socks in the mail was a bit funny on its own - I don't know how kids just know when something is kid-sized and meant for them, but he just knew they were for him and pulled them onto his own feet with some pretty intense concentration. I have to admit another reason why I love this is because I've been working on a crocheted blanket for a long time, and it's something I can only now dream of finishing before I die. I brought it along with me on our trip to Vancouver, with grand plans to get it done, and I actually did get a good bit of it done during an episode of Master Chef after Caleb had gone to bed, but I'm probably around 15% of the way done. My plan B, after getting home from Vancouver, was to leave it in the car so on long car trips to see the grandparents or to head into the country I could also work on it, but I didn't factor in the fact that these long car trips were mostly spent eating junk food or napping. One day...