Thursday, December 04, 2014

Christmas-time Dilemma

As the deadline approaches for mailing of greetings cards to the UK and Europe, in order for them to arrive in time for Christmas, I find myself with a faint feeling of foreboding.

All recipients of my UK or Europe-bound cards, ex- work friends, cousins, old friends are "of a certain age" - most ages are just about as "certain" as my own, a few are even more "certain", some a tad less. I keep putting off beginning to write the cards, or even addressing the envelopes. The most I've managed, so far, is attaching the little self-addressed return labels to the upper left-hand corner of the cards' envelopes!

It's silly really, but I feel wary of posting brief cheery letters or remarks to recipients who might have troubles, be they of health, bereavement, or they might have moved to a new "senior-type" address, or even might have shuffled off their mortal coil without me knowing of it. I'm pretty sure most of their nearest and dearest would have informed me of the latter though - but what if they're waiting until Christmas card time to break the news to those at a distance? (Bites lip).

Last year one cousin who has always corresponded at Christmas time failed to do so, and has left me wondering; two other regulars on my card list failed to emerge last year too, one of whom had always sent me a calendar; the other's card from me was returned (in April!) as "addressee gone away".

In these days of instant communication, e-mail, cellphones, etc.etc. this predicament ought not to arise; it likely won't arise for the slightly younger generations as they reach their later decades. My greetings card recipients are not as keen on using the computer as I am. One or two have laptops but hardly ever use 'em for correspondence or for accessing the internet, others refuse to have a computer at home because they were sickened by them during working life; others, if they are fully computer literate as I'm sure some must be, have chosen not to correspond with me by that method, or have lost my e-mail address - which is very likely!

What to do? Maybe they are thinking the same about me! If I decided not to send any cards this year, they'd definitely be thinking the same about me!

I'll leave it a few days more, until 9 December is almost here, then I suppose I'll have to dive in and tell myself, "What the heck - if there's anything amiss they should have let me know before now."


Sonny G said...

I hope all you write will respond.

LIFE HAPPENS and some folks choose to retreat in silence.

mike said...

I've whittled my sending list to a minimum...most people I know don't send cards any more, but I will hear from them by phone or email with their verbal Xmas greeting. I don't bother with the long-winded and now write a simple sentence of greetings, lest I never finish, as you are finding now. I rationalize that I can always send a more detailed, personalized letter later, whether I do or don't...LOL.

Have anyjazz print a couple of photos of you two on one of your many jaunts, enclose the photo with a "Thinking of wishes!".

“Money's scarce
Times are hard
Here's your fucking
Xmas card” Phyllis Diller

Twilight said...

Sonny ~ Thanks, I hope so too. And, yes, if that be their choice, I have to respect it.

Twilight said...

mike ~ My list has almost halved since my first Christmas here. Were I still living in the UK I might have stopped sending cards altogether (after warning friends and relatives that I'd be doing so). Here in the US I have enjoyed retaining the few remaining annual links I have to the "old country" though; it stops my past from disappearing completely into the mists of time. :-)

I shall keep greetings as bland and brief as possible this year, with one exception. A guy I worked with at the Employment Tribunals from day one to the day he retired, a few years before I did. At Christmas he always sends me a long beautifully written in near calligraphy-style, newsy letter. My annual Christmas letters to him are far less beautiful, but he seems to manage to read my scrawl. I'll still write to him this year, but probably type it this time. He's some five years my senior but still seems free of all but creaky minor ailments, so I'll have to trust that he and his wife and family have come through 2014 as reasonably unscathed as Anyjazz and I have done.

Good idea about a photo - will see if I can find one suitable - maybe a group photo from Thanksgiving this year would be good.

Love that quip of Diller's !

mike (again) said...

I still have to verify I'm not a computer, but I do like the new photo of a number much better.

"Google's new take on CAPTCHAs just takes one click"

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Glad to know that things have improved on that front.

R J Adams said...

It seems strange in this age of instant communication around the globe that it's still possible for old friends to shuffle off 'this mortal coil' without us ever knowing. I only send cards to family and my closest friends in Britain, and the latter are dwindling - either moved away, stopped replying, or possibly six feet under without bothering to let me know ("That's so typical of old so-and-so. He was never the most thoughtful!")
Oh well, look on the bright side - just think what we'll save on postage!

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~ Yes, there's that! :-)

I pulled my sox up, got letter and cards to UK/Europe all done and posted them today. We had an amusing few minutes at the secondary post-office we used. Assistant getting used to new fancy mailing software, hadn't done many international pieces of mail, had a lot of trouble finding out whether to type United Kingdom (had trouble spelling it), England or Great Britain). Tried all 3, and then some.
LOL! Anyway, as long as she did what she had to do properly they should arrive in good time for recipients to respond with their good or worse news, knowing that at least we are still alive and, kind of, kicking.