Looking Backward and Forward, Mail-Wise

Feb 13, 2017 | 0 comments

Postcard of Oysterville Post Office Outside and Inside

I don’t know how old I was when I realized that the daily mail was something to look forward to.  Maybe I was five or six and my Oysterville Granny or my Boston Nana had sent a letter addressed specifically to me.  Oh, the joy of it!

It wasn’t until many years later that I learned the flip side of that anticipation: a little bit of dread, probably having to do with incoming bills.  Then along came the junk-mail years and both anticipation and dread went on more-or-less permanent hold as far as my post office box was concerned.  Just annoyance at more recycling to be done.

Betty Paxton at 100

Nowadays, my surprises from afar often come in the form of emails and often they are from people I don’t know.  In particular, messages and queries come in response to my blog and, more often than not, to a blog that I posted long ago.  I usually have to recalibrate my mental calendar a bit to remember what my newly-acquired correspondent is talking about.

Yesterday, for instance, I received an email in response to my April 16, 2016 blog, “Betty Paxton: My Role Model.”  The email was from a woman who had worked with Betty in Seattle back in the ‘70s and wanted to get in touch with her.  She expressed amazement that Betty was now 102 and confided that she, herself, was only 67 and talked about a small driftwood and seashell sculpture of a seagull that Betty had made for her long ago.  She still has it, though the tiny beak has broken off.

And, a few days before that, along came an email from someone with a familiar name who wanted to know something about a place she stayed in Long Beach when she was a little girl visitor in the 1940s.  Unfortunately, my knowledge of the Peninsula during that period is pretty much confined to Granny and Papa’s house across from the Oysterville Church – the center of my world when I, too, was a little girl visitor to this magical land of woods and bay, picnics and sand castles, friends and family.

Back In The Day

I loved being in on both these queries and hope that my responses were helpful.  In the first instance, I forwarded the email to Betty, herself.  For the other, I reached out to someone who grew up in Long Beach and would know more than I about the accommodations available in past years.  I have my mental fingers crossed that my forwarding and networking attempts will be helpful.  Meanwhile… I’m eager to see what today’s mail will bring!  You never know…



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