Souvenirs. Postcards. Today these words almost seem quaint. My husband and I once when traveling told our host in Slovenia that we would send him a postcard from our next destination.
He seemed puzzled. You mean like an auntie or my grandmother?
I guess it did seem rather old-fashioned—especially since we could easily send an email or upload a picture from our phone. Or any number of things. And easier too. Our next destination was Montenegro then Albania. How does one even ask for a stamp in Albanian? How reliable is postal service? Postcards in the US have been known to take decades. Mail sent from the front during World War II is still getting delivered.
I LOVE postcards. I buy them and send them and appreciate getting them in the mail. I save them and tape them to the walls of my office or upon the door to the room we have reserved for couchsurfers.
Going through my parents old photos I stumbled upon old postcards. It seems postcard writing runs in the family. I have postcards written by my mother to my grandmother and aunts “back home.” In one she mentions that she is going to a New Year’s Eve party in New York City and that she hasn’t gotten into any trouble yet. She has written slantwise on the blank side of the card in order to save space.
In addition there are two sets of postcards from Rome, bought but never mailed. One dates from around the 1980s when my parents visited on a post-retirement adventure and the other set is from 1944 when the Allies were working their way up the boot.
I have a jumbo-size postcard from the late great Cornerstone Festival that a photographer/ad man named Bill Latoki gave away some years before the festival ended.
Some journals refer to flash as postcard writing. As in send us a postcard! A story written in as much space as a postcard allows.
Take an old postcard and send out a message. Museums such as the Art Institute have a whole section devoted to postcards which can be useful as prompts—your postcard entry can be a short flash having to do with Van Gogh’s bedroom.