Update on the waterlogged letter

My last post in April was about a waterlogged letter I received from Australia. I’ve since heard from this pen pal, and she told me that another international pal (besides me) also informed her that her letter arrived waterlogged. AND my pen pal says that she herself has received 4 waterlogged letters. It appears that this is happening on the Australia side.  My pen pal mentioned flooding in her area of Australia. I can understand a few raindrops getting on a letter, but the letter I got appeared to have been totally soaked – submerged in water.

Thankfully all my other letters to and from pen pals are coming and going just fine – dry and intact! Perhaps one lesson is to use pens with waterproof ink? In my last post, I explained that the waterlogged letter was un-readable due to the smeared ink. If not for that, I still could have read it even though the paper itself was “wrinkly” from water.

A waterlogged letter!

After being a pen pal for about 36 years…a first. I opened my mailbox and saw a letter from a pen friend in Australia. I could tell by the “wrinkly” look of the envelope that it had gotten wet at some point in the postal journey. At first, I was not concerned as the envelope was dry and intact.

But as I opened it, it became clear that the letter had not just gotten a few raindrops on it, but had been totally soaked or submerged in water! The letter was written on a note card and stationery paper, which was wrinkly, and the ink was totally smeared/smudged and unreadable as a result. Some paper nature images enclosed in the letter were all wrinkly too. The one surviving item, without any damage, was a laminated bookmark! The lamination had made it waterproof.

Over the years I have received a rare ripped or torn letter in the mail, but never one damaged by water. How about you??

Pen/writing themed rubber stamps

I recently found a bag full of wood block rubber stamps for $4.00 at a local consignment shop. This stamp alone made it worthwhile!

The wood block had no identifying info such as a company or artist. It could be that it was self mounted onto the block.

How to “interpret” this wonderful stamp? Our words by pen or pencil and the postal service fly places? Our words can fly to the future if our letter is preserved? Etc.

This stamp looked best with pigment ink. The dye ink did not work as well.

The other stamps on this envelope are ones I already had. The ink bottle is by 100 Proof Press, and the fountain pen nib by Stampin’ Up. (I am NOT an affiliate, so if you follow a link there is no benefit for me.)

USA first-class postage to Canada

For those in the USA who have used the postal system for years, you may remember there used to be a special international first-class rate for Mexico and Canada – it was more than domestic first class but less than the international rate. I am dating myself, as this was years ago! But at some point the special rate for Canada and Mexico ceased. However, I discovered several months ago, by accident, when I was double checking the postage amount for a slightly heavy letter to Canada, that:

“International postage (for first-class postage) starts at $1.30, covering the postage costs for up to 2 ounces of mail to be delivered to any address in Canada.”
Normally the limit is 1 ounce. See the chart below.

So, take advantage of being able to stuff extra paper items in your envelope to Canada, up to 2 ounces! This may be nothing new, but I was unaware of it. Years ago I mailed to Canada quite often, having personal friends and pen pals there. But then I lost touch with these people, and only gained a new Canadian pen pal a couple years ago.

By my mailbox…

We recently had unusual snowy weather in South Carolina and the snow stayed on the ground several days! Typically, when we get a little snow, it melts the next day because it warms up. This time it stayed cold, and I enjoyed seeing snow out my window for a few days in a row. I grew up in Buffalo, NY where we got LOTS of snow, but I’ve lived in SC about 25 years now where our winters are mild. Here is a photo of me by my mailbox.

Memo holder for your desk

My husband does woodworking as a hobby, and I had him make eight “memo holders” to give as gifts. (But I kept two!) While called a “memo holder” you could use one to hold whatever…a photo, outgoing mail, incoming mail, a recipe card, etc. The right back one has a “moat” around it that I thought could be decorative or practical. I put acorns in it, but you could use it on your desk for paper clips. Here you see six of them:

Rubber stamped cards

Here are some cards I recently rubber stamped, but I am not so good at photographing objects. Hopefully, you get the general idea, despite shadows on some.  I share these partly for my own future reference, for ideas when I stamp in the future. I am a simpler stamper, and not interested in more advanced technique or more involved steps.

Mailboxes and mail carriers and snow

We don’t get snow like this where I live now, but we did in the northeast U.S.A. where I grew up. This meme (below) shows thoughtfulness for the mail man!

With these curbside mailboxes, the mail man drives and can put the mail in the box from his driver’s seat. Where I live now (southeast), this type of mailbox – at the curb/street – is very common, even in town, in residential neighborhoods with many houses. Where I grew up, this type of mailbox you saw mostly in rural areas. In town, the mailboxes were attached to your house – either on the front porch or your front door had a mail slot – and thus the mail man walked from house to house carrying a bag of mail.

* P.S. I suppose calling this person the “mail man” is outdated, but it is still what comes to mind. Other options would be: mail carrier, postal carrier, mail woman, mail man, etc.

When I visited Finland, I got to see a mail woman that delivered the mail via bicycle. See here.

The mail?? The post??

I just realized that November is the 4 year anniversary of when I began this blog. I don’t always blog consistently, but I plan to keep at it! Here is a post (slightly edited) that was originally on the blog in December 2017…

The mail? The post?

I recently told someone that I would send them an item by post. They did not know what this meant! “What is post?” Uh, by mail – the postal service. Then they felt a little dumb. haha.

But really, they should not have felt dumb about it. I tend to use the word post, and I recently realized this is more of a British or European term. Somewhere along the line I picked this up, even though I am American. Perhaps for several reasons: I had a great deal of Canadian influence in my youth. I appreciate certain classic British novels and movies. I’ve long had international pen friends (and international students live with me) that typically write and speak British English.

If you look up the word post in the Merriam-Webster dictionary, there are several definitions, but one is this: “chiefly British, a nation’s organization for handling mail.”

The online free dictionary similarly says for post:

1. Chiefly British
a. a single dispatch or delivery of mail.
b. the mail itself.
c. an established mail system or service.

I sometimes sign my letters “Your friend by post and pen.” You’ll note that this blog is called Postman’s Treasure, rather than Mailman’s Treasure.

However, I am a blend of American and British English when it comes to the post or mail, and may even be inconsistent with my word use. When it comes to my home mail box, I use the word mail. It is the mailbox, not postbox. Do you say that you will “post a letter” or “mail a letter”? Most Americans, in my experience, say mail. I also say mail a letter; somehow post a letter sounds strange to me!

In the U.S.A. we do call it the POST office. It is the USPS: the United States Postal Service. So why is it that we are more likely to use the word mail instead of post…we mail letters, check the mailbox, look for the mailman, and mail packages. Hmmm?