Don Your Way column: Why the written word needs to make a comeback in Doncaster
The other day, I received a lovely little hand written card - and its arrival set me thinking.
When was the last time I received a hand-written letter?
And when was the last time you got one?
In this day and age of email, texting, Facebook messaging, Snapchat and all the rest, letter writing and even sending cards seems to be a dying art form.
In days gone by, my birthday would herald the arrival of dozens of cards plopping onto the doormat.
Now, there's little more than a handful (and that's not because I don't have any friends before you ask).
Instead, birthday greetings tend to come via Facebook. And they are invariably more plentiful than cards.
Obviously, its the ease with which people can wish you a happy birthday on Facebook which appeals.
There's no having to go to the shop, no having to browse the racks, no having to find a stamp (does anyone even know how much one costs these days?) or trudging down to the post box in the rain and then wondering if it has got there or not.
The same goes for Christmas cards. Year on year, the number of festive greetings arriving through my door has diminished.From rows of cards adorning the walls, there's now barely enough to cover the back of the door.
And postcards too.
When was the last time you had a missive from someone on their hols, invariably arriving at your door long after they'd actually got back from Spain and the 'wish you were here' message seemed a bit flat.
There's a definite joy in receiving something through the post though that's not a final demand, a credit card bill, junk mail or just pointless redirected letters from an old address that just go straight in the bin.
A former colleague of mine used to send me beautifully typed reams of A4. Another friend still makes the effort to send birthday cards, even though we've not actually met in person for years, always with a witty message scribbled inside.
There's still a childlike excitement at going to the door to find a colourful envelope in a handwriting you don't recognise or better still, to be handed a card or a note in person - where you can see first hand the effort someone has gone to to put a bit of sunshine into your day.
I know it may seem ironic as I sit here writing this on a computer keyboard, but rediscover your love for the handwritten word today and send someone a little letter or note.
It really will make the day for both of you.