Holiday Greetings

As another year draws to conclusion, it is time once again to extend sincere holiday greetings to friends and family, near and far. This, of course, includes the readers of Social Correspondence! Thank you for allowing me into your lives over this past year.  For those of you who have shared comments, subjected yourselves to interviews, or contributed guest columns, special thanks! Our mailbox has been filled daily for the past couple of months. First, there was that annual slew of holiday catalogs, offering tantalizing glimpses of everything from flannel pajamas to expensive electronic equipment. Despite…

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Calistoga: After the Fires

Most of us have favorite go-to places, destinations that refresh us but are not necessarily far from home.  It could be a walk in the woods, a stroll around the lake, or simply relaxing in one’s own backyard.  The historic town of Calistoga, in the Napa Valley, California, has long been one of my favorite retreats. Calistoga is just far enough away from home to feel like a true getaway.  Even given today’s difficult traffic conditions, a trip to Calistoga can be accomplished in just under two hours. The town is known for its natural hot…

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Heroic Postal Carriers

Modern day heroes, including heroic postal carriers, have a way of emerging during catastrophic times. Ordinary men and women, going about the daily business of life and work, step up to the plate to perform heroic acts during the most trying of events. This fall has presented many life changing challenges, as well as opportunities for such heroism. Hurricanes and floods battered and inundated Texas, Florida, Louisiana, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and beyond. Earthquakes in central and southern Mexico shattered buildings and lives. Closer to home, in the San Francisco Bay Area, wildfires are…

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Postcards and Notes
Volkswagen buses meet on Old Route 66

Postcards and Notes

Summer and fall are excellent times for vacation, and there is no better way to share those experiences than by sending postcards and notes by mail. It’s quick, it’s easy, and there are beautiful options to represent those good times. But more to the point, postcards and notes are a great way to communicate, anytime and any place. “Having a great time in (fill in the blank). Wish you were here.” This is a standard cliché about messages on postcards, that they are rote and say very little. But nothing could be further from the truth.…

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Royal Mail Delivers Your Letters – and Packages, Too!
Letterbox pillar, St. Ives

Royal Mail Delivers Your Letters – and Packages, Too!

My recent visit to the United Kingdom would not have been complete without checking out the Royal Mail. Picturesque letterboxes led me to believe that a sweet, old-fashioned post office would be just around the corner, but that turned out not to be the case. The post office in St. Ives (Cambridgeshire) is co-located in the back of WHSmith, which is, in this location, a news and sundry store. One can purchase any one of three daily newspapers, a bottle of water, an umbrella, a Cadbury’s (now owned by Hershey) chocolate bar and various other snacks…

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A Visit to St. Ives
Rowers from St. Ives Rowing Club cross under Chapel Bridge

A Visit to St. Ives

For a brief four days, I have been visiting the lovely village of St. Ives, in Cambridgeshire, UK (not to be confused with that other St. Ives in Cornwall).  While the main purpose of the visit is to spend a bit of time with my daughter, I also am very much taken by this picturesque old English town, which originates in the 9th century. St. Ives is located on the Great River Ouse, just thirty minutes away from the university town of Cambridge.   Flocks of snowy white swans gather in the water on the quay, near…

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Banner Year for Stamps
Protect Pollinators stamps

Banner Year for Stamps

If you like to put something pretty, creative or unique on your envelopes, this has been a banner year for stamps. From the transformative Total Solar Eclipse stamp to the newly released Protect Pollinators or Sharks Forever stamps, the U.S. Postal Service has a Forever stamp for you. My personal preferences for stamps include nature, animals, art, and literature. Fortunately, many of stamps issued this year, or yet to be issued in 2017, fit in at least one of these categories, and often more than one. Following four years of drought in California, our yard was…

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A SPECIAL LETTER FROM MY GRANDDAUGHTER AT Y CAMP
A special letter from camp

A SPECIAL LETTER FROM MY GRANDDAUGHTER AT Y CAMP

  Guest post by Kay Roberts I received a special letter from my only granddaughter and namesake, Catherine, which she sent me from Y Camp.  What was so special about it? Catherine is ten and was spending two whole weeks away from home at Y Camp.  How would she handle this big new event?  Could she eat and sleep in a strange new place with kids she didn’t know? I remembered back decades ago when her father went to Y Camp.  It was a day camp and he only had one night when the kids camped…

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Profile: Bud Bresnahan, Postal Inspector
Rincon Center July 2017 photo by Murray Schneider

Profile: Bud Bresnahan, Postal Inspector

Francis Gerald (“Bud”) Bresnahan grew up in Pacifica, California, son of a postal inspector.  His father, also Bud (Francis X.) Bresnahan, started work for the U.S. Postal Service shortly after he returned from his wartime service in the Marine Corps in 1946. Working for the post office was an excellent post-war job.  As a high school graduate, Bud (Francis X.) worked in the shipyards until he enlisted in 1942, after the attack on Pearl Harbor.  He was stationed near Quanico Marine base, Virginia, and later, Tientsin, China.  In 1943 he married his sweetheart, Charlotte, in Washington,…

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UPS Tragedy Strikes Close to Home

(Three United Parcel Service (UPS) drivers were shot and killed on June 14 at the UPS distribution center in San Francisco, CA, a tragedy perpetrated by a disgruntled driver, who then turned the gun on himself). by Murray Schneider Mike Lefiti was a bear of a man and a cub of a boy. Tragically killed on June 14, a victim of a senseless and inexplicable shooting at the UPS Distribution Center on Potrero Hill, Big Mike, as I called him when he was a 46-year old-adult and a16-year-old teenager, was my UPS driver and my American…

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