Thursday, January 16, 2014

Handwriting - The Lost Art!!!

Are you old enough to remember the inkwell in the school desk, and the pen with nib that you had to dip in regularly to get enough ink colour to write the words?  Do you remember when Biro's were first in use for the general public?

Yes, I am old enough to remember those times - and find it sad that in this modern age school students focus on what can be achieved with the keyboard on a computer or tablet, or even "smart" phone.  I note now that young people do not know how to "read" hand writing and I am not talking about the smudgy writing of a doctor - actually they don't "write" now - their prescriptions are printed from the computer/printer.

Do you remember when young people wrote letters to "Pen pal" - someone that they seldom had met, and may never meet, but exchanged regular letters sometimes to and from other parts of the world.  I had a penfriend in the UK, in the Philippines, and in another Australian state and kept up the communication for many years, though it petered out in my early 20's.

All those letters, and the letters I exchanged with my parents over a 50 year period were written by hand, though in the last ten years of his life my father learned to type on a small portable typewriter.

I have many of the letters that my parents sent to me, even a rare one from my sister who was not a letter writer, and the "love letters" from my husband - though we are no longer together.  Current folk using their computers, the Internet, or their phones to communicate will not have this legacy to show their offspring.

When I moved into my new home last year, I had to unpack several boxes and many of them contain "ephemera" - letters, certificates, photographs, badges, and other items that I can't bear to part with.  I doubt my family will have the same interest in it all when I am gone - but for now they are my treasures.

I wonder how valuable hand written letters will become in the future.  Also recipes - hand written.


One of my special pieces of hand written items is a page of recipes.  I have several of these and I will treasure them.

Something I am planning to do is write a letter to my son, daughter, grandchildren and my sister - and will put them in sealed envelopes within a larger envelop - thanking them, telling them I love them, and so forth, so that when I go they will have something special from me.  I will do in in handwriting - in a card that I have made with my own hand, perhaps something made with my home made paper (yes, I can and do make my own paper at times).

I am fortunate in that I still love handwriting - and I love writing using my computer too - but all special letters are written in hand with one of my collection of Sheaffer fountain pens. 


Francene Stanley said...

Oh yes. I remember those days of dipping the pen into the inkwell at school. And all the items you mention. Some of my most treasured items are letters I wrote to my mother over the years. She kept them all, unknown to me. After she died, they returned to me. I love your idea of writing to your family so they'll remember you.

peter petterson said...

Was part of my world in NZ too, Di. Dip in pens, we called them!

Nick said...

I totally agree with you. I have always had such terrible handwriting, but I'd love to be able to write in calligraphy though.