An early morning walk to the post box today because I had to post 10 postcards. This is one of my hobbies called “Postcrossing”. I cannot even remember how I got into this to be honest, I probably came across the site in a magazine or something. The idea of it intrigued me. As a teenager I had a pen-pal – a boy who lived in Sicily and we sent letters backwards and forwards including vinyl singles, one of which was quite good for a pop song in Italian that I couldn’t sing along to the words of! It came to an abrupt end for some unknown reason and his letters back just stopped. As a younger kid I was obsessed with getting things in the post and would sign up to all manner of adverts for brochures/junk mail/competition entries and the like. The purpose of this was merely to get post through the letter box that was just for me. I think I probably signed up for umpteen potential courses, holiday mailing companies and free gift offers all at the age of 7. My Mum used to go crazy at the amount of post that I would accumulate on a daily basis.

Postcrossing is a site where you join up and create a profile. You then are able to send a certain number of postcards to anyone in the world – it generates an address of another member of the site, completely randomly, each time you request one. You can see their profile, address to send the postcard to and consider any particular postcards they like – they may love animals/crafts for example and you can select something from your own pile of postcards that you think they might like. Once you get the address you write your postcard, adding a reference number that the site gives you each time. This is the number that the recipient uses to register your card and that in turn generates you to be able to receive a random postcard from anyone else who is a member and wants to send one to another random member of the site.

The site itself is such an achievement as it has 793,628 members, 210 countries involved last time I checked and was set up by a guy in 2005 who loved sending and receiving post too. For the cost of an international stamp – ยฃ1.42 you can send and receive smiles in postboxes. In the current situation it seems even more important to try and make someone smile and if I achieve that with each set of 10 postcards its all worthwhile.

If you want to give it a go, checkout