From experiences over the past month or so, I have begun to understand at least partially how communication used to be in the old days. In so many movies , you watch the protagonist bug the postman, as to whether any mail has arrived(Pather Panchali, though in a different context, was the last movie in which i saw this). Especially when he is expecting the results of some job application or test. And then when the postman replies in the negative, see the protoganist give a look of extreme dejection, and sometimes extreme desperation.
Well, these days most of my friends and me do the same thing. Except that instead of bugging the postman, each day we sign into our mail ids, just to see INBOX (0). And in the rare case that you do have unread mail, open the inbox just to see that you have a mail from WINDOWS LIVE telling you about IM! in love. As though you care if windows live is in love with yahoo who decided to jilt his advances.
I guess at least in the old days you could have bugged the postman as to whether he was sure that no mail addressed to me has come. You could also tell him that it would be extremely nice if he would deliver the mail from ABC university as soon as he sees it. And possibly when he does deliver it, see some sort of happiness on his face too. In this context, e-mail is extremely frustrating. Here you can't even vent your frustrations at hotmail or gmail.
Another incident that makes me reminesce about postal mail was ironically an e-mail ireceived from a friend recently. The mail was one of those nice mails, which people write for no particular reason except to keep in touch. It rambled about and talked about a lot of things and about nothing. And as I was reading it, it made me think how nice would it have been, if such a mail had come out of the blue, by post. Joy, I guess, is delivered in packages like these.
But noone writes mail like that anymore. Not even in the English composition period at school, which incidentally was the last time I wrote such a letter. It would be nice if people (including me) get back to the habit of letter writing and then sending them by post!!!