I grew up with a love for writing. No, not the creativity, but the sheer act of forming beautiful letters on a piece of paper. In my initial years in school, handwriting wasn't something I paid attention to. But one evening, in fact 2 days before the final exam of my fifth grade, my mother made me rewrite an entire year's worth of school work because she did not like what she saw in my notebook. According to her, handwriting and writing itself spoke a lot about the person. That was an 'aha moment'.
Since then I wrote! It was my second hobby (besides reading). What did I write? Anything... I filled diaries with poems, anecdotes, things that I read and liked. In fact scribbling was such a bad habit, I would have scribbled in almost every single classmate's notebook by the end of the year. People saved their special notebooks from me, because I would just mindlessly scribble something on them. There was a bright side to it too. Since I had a good handwriting, all teachers would ask me to write their journals, students grade records, even report cards! Yes, you read it right...I knew the class results much before everyone else in school. I was privy to very confidential information simply because of my handwriting. :) I wrote banners, my school projects, my brother's, cousins', nephew's. If there was something to be written, I was the go-to person. I still use a notebook in office/home to plan my days, my engagements or to simply write for the love of it.
Off late it felt like I was an artisan of a dying traditional tribal art form called 'Cursive'and I was coming to terms with it. But the other day I heard Sugata Mitra (of the NIIT fame) talking very convincingly about how reading was more important in today's education than writing; that how writing was totally redundant in today's life and I realized its just a matter of time! Cringe I may at the difficulty with which the new interns in my office hold their pens and write those barely decipherable disconnected alphabets to make them look like a word, but they are here to stay with their tablets and smartphones.
So for the millionth time I am going to read all those hand written notes from friends over the course of years. From a four year old neighbour to the one from a dear friend who was leaving town for further studies, observing the curves, the lines, the sweat of their palms on the edge of the paper and once again appreciating how their writing indeed spoke so much about them and what they thought of me; noting that probably those are last handwritten notes I would ever receive from someone in this lifetime.