Last week was Eve’s birthday. Which of course means a trip to pick up parcels from the post office, never my favourite job. The bored postal worker hands me three packages held together with elastic: Eve King, Eve King, Victoria Wallop. Victoria Wallop? I don’t recognise that writing. Turn over, in the same script, the words ‘From Josie George‘. It’s from Josie! Oh my goodness, it’s my Secret Post Club parcel, and it’s from Josie!
Standing in the middle of the busy pavement outside Asda, I rip open the jiffy bag, as excited as Eve will be later when she opens her packages. I glimpse pink socks, a bar of Green and Blacks Almond and a Lonely Planet photography book. Almost hidden, tucked alongside the book, is an envelope. An envelope means a letter. I’ll wait, read it later, when I get home. You can’t rush a proper letter
I can’t wait. I have to read it now. So, getting in the way of hurrying shoppers, I open the letter. And what a gorgeous letter it is too. In her beautiful handwriting, Josie says many lovely things, things that make me smile, things that make the sun come out.
Later, I am still smiling. I don’t often receive letters. Emails, yes. Texts, yes. Cards, sometimes. But letters, no. I used to receive a lot of letters, when I was at boarding school. And later, when I went travelling, my first stop in every city would be the poste restante office. Receiving letters used to make my day, then, like now, I’d stop in the street, unable to contain my excitement at reading writing. Scribbled notes, rambling stories, personality oozing out of every hand inked word. An email’s nice, but it’s not the same. A proper letter makes you feel loved.
The pink socks are gloriously cosy, the yummy chocolate was shared with a friend, the book is full of inspiration. But without a doubt, the most precious thing in the parcel was the letter. Thank you, Josie.