I remember having written letters to the electric company, to the water company, to the President of the United States, just to see if I could get another treasured response one day, a response that would fill me with anticipation and wonder as the days passed, filling my imagination with possibilities and ideas. And I rarely if ever that I recall, failed to receive a response from those I wrote. I've formally applied for pen pals through services, and enjoyed relationships that spanned across years and across thousands of miles, through the regular mail. To see the envelopes arrive with colorful stamps from every postal station the letter would pass through, arriving on my doorstep, would fill me with a unique and wonderful feeling that there was an entire world outside and far away from mine, that wanted me, that was as curious and anxious as I was to have a taste of the exotic and unusual. Something new, something personal of that world so far away from mine was what I could bring to my doorstep at will. The lessons I learned from strangers I met and befriended through the mail are lessons I've carried with me my entire life.
As a child I had the unique experience of riding alone on Greyhound buses every week due to a custody arrangement between my parents. I was often quickly befriended and protected by women who readily spotted me, small, alone, and they would bend my ear for the entire eight hour ride as I traveled from one parent's house to another. They might grill me on my multiplication tables or spelling, or take the opportunity to reach out to me and hammer me with life lessons that they wish someone had taught them at my age. One such woman I remember very clearly felt compelled to tell me about her life as a teenage mother, young, alone, growing up herself while raising her own children. She did her best to make an impression on me about finishing school, not hurrying to grow up, and used herself as the example. She made quite an impression on me, and we continued to write through the mail for years, as she mentored me the way that she wished someone had mentored her at my young age.
With the rich and varied experience that I achieved using the mail as a child, I find it very easy to imagine how easy it would be to find romance through mail personals. The mail is very personal. It is romantic. Mail personals carry through the modern age the same romantic and patient tradition that has been alive probably as long as the mail itself. There is something very honest and endearing about finding friendship in the mail. Personals cannot be any different. In fact, it is easy to imagine that mail personals are probably the ideal way to begin a romance, find a life love, through the regular mail. Personals can't get any more personal than a personally penned letter that someone takes the time to wrap, stamp, and drop in the mailbox. Mail dating might be the most romantic manner in which to begin a romance. It would be filled with anticipation, patience, and would foster the imagination.