Three a.m. has been an excellent time to wash bibs and go through old postcards that we found in the house. Don't ask why I've been up at three a.m.
We have hundreds of postcards from the 1890's through the 1980's. In rummaging through them, I've noticed that many of them are ongoing conversations that span many postcards so I only get a short idea of what is being said. Sometimes the messages sound like the ones which Garrison Keillor reads on his Prairie Home Companion Show...snippets of information sent through Keillor to the folks listening back home. Other times, the lack of context can be very confusing. For example...
On the back, here is what it says:
Dated: Feb 6 1921...Niagara Falls, NY...7 pm
Have been on the walk for nearly 4 hours on our old tracks. Father
This makes me so curious. What walk? Which tracks? What is the backstory? I've been to Niagara Falls...was I on those tracks? Ah, well. I'll never know.
Then there is this postcard...
You're a hound and probably don't deserve a card - but I'll send you one anyway. How do you like my front porch? Honest, it is! My address is Conservatoire Americain - in case the bus leaves town. Love, baby
Or this one (which is one of my favorites):
Murray, we was riding an auto yesterday from 11:30 till about 8 PM. All kinds of trouble. Will tell you the rest when I see you. Help Mamma all you can. Your Papa
These all seem like ideal jumping off points for writing a short story. All of these writers have provided a tiny little window to peer out of...like the window of a moving train...we catch a glimpse, an impression of an exchange, and we are left to assemble the rest.
Not that I have scads of time to write short stories. Which leads me to the obligatory picture of Miss Grace...my new general contractor, site boss and taskmaster.
She's a slavedriver, all right!