Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Snail Mail

It is a term used for mails sent by postman, through manual delivery system, after Internet and email system has been invented. Don’t quote me for that, for I am not sure if it is true. But it does occur to me as such, because before the invention of the latter, all mails were sent manually. It took weeks or months for a letter, card or parcel to arrive, and hence communication between mankind via this system were very slow, not forgetting that papers and ink were expensive back then.

Through ages of advancement in science and technology, transportation system has improved tremendously, allowing mails to be sent at a greater speed to recipients. Together with the break through in information technology, the invention of Internet and emailing system provide an alternative method of communication – a method which does not need a postman in the process of message delivery for long distance communication.

No doubt it has improved the connectivity between mankind, and speed up the necessary interactions between human. The latter even makes businesses dealt more speedily, exchanging knowledge and information in matters of seconds, and many more benefits which result in the society we have today – fast paced and tightly knitted social networks. On the other hand, mails which are not delivered by this system are termed snail mail, simply because the latter process takes longer time than the emailing system to achieve the same purpose in communication.

It leaves one wonders if one day the snail mail will totally be replaced by the more popularly favoured emailing system. The latter is fast, accurate and convenient. While the former, it’s relatively slower, efficiency depends heavily on the officers in a post office, weather, dogs along the way, and many more factors. Will the people still use the slower system to send a message across, risking the mail to be lost some where on the way to the recipient?

The answer is Yes. And it always will be. There are messages important enough to be hand-written down by the sender herself, revealing her upmost sincerity and emotions through every alphabet.

And sometimes, pictures.

The authenticity of a card written all over with one’s own handwriting, with every careful stroke of the pen landed on the paper tells how much a person has been terribly missed, the uncontainable excitement while imaging her friend receiving it with surprise, the joy while inserting the envelope-full of love into the mailbox, the anxious wait for her friend’s reply after trusting the postman will deliver the mail, and the cycle repeats. 

Technology does make things happen at lightning speed, with shortening the agony of anxious waits as the main benefit. But doesn’t the wait strengthen the faith we have in the relationship between friends? Will one not be thrilled to know someone spent TIME picking a card, writing a letter for him or her, take the trouble to send it (across the South China Sea) via snail mail?

I am thrilled to receive Xu Vin’s card today. Thank you dear :-)

1 comment:

Humayra' said...

here here....
i totally agree cherlinn...
miss the days when snail mail is still popular. loved the letters that i received from friends and pen pals..
we should perhaps make a snail mail club or sumthing.. hehe..

lots of luv..
take care!