I don´t know about you but penpalling has been in my life since I was 16. Oh man, what an incredible world that is!
Back when I was 16 I received a letter from a girl belonging to a Baptist church in the States. I didn´t just receive this letter out of nowhere – a local friend who was Baptist gave it to me because she didn´t speak English and thought I might have liked the idea. I did. And so it began.
I have used www.penpalworld.org for about 10 years now. It´s a free platform created by a penpalling enthusiast who wanted to bring people together.
If you haven´t ever done it, here´s why you might want to give it a try:
- If you feel lonely or don´t have a close friend around, reach out to penpals and see what happens
- You get to know to most interesting people from other countries
- You have a space to out your thoughts onto paper (real or digital) and someone will actually read it
- You might build a true friendship with someone you have never seen
In the world of penpalling it can happen that you don´t ever hear from people, but that´s a part of the experience. As in real life people come and go, so it happens here, too.
My correspondence with that American girl was short. But then there came along new pen friends from Moscow and Tehran, and that lasted for a few years. That faded away, too, and that’s okay.
You might ask me “Then what´s the point”? For the sakes of the experience. Just like you meet someone one day and you have no clue how long your relationship will last, so it is here.
Today I have 5 penpals. They are all very different people, from different countries. And the interaction with each of them is very unique. I will admit that I have a favourite person among them to correspond with 😊 Yet, all of the correspondence is meaningful.
Give it a try if you feel like you might want to know more about another culture.
And if you still feel like it’s not for you, I won’t be trying to convince you 😊
Oh, and by the way, sometimes you get to meet them. I met my penpal in Slovakia after 5 years of writing back and forth. It was precious: we hiked in the mountains, played chess and had great conversations.
Life sure is an interesting thing, and penpalling can be a part of what makes it interesting.