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  • Writer's pictureMatt Woodcock

#12 Deltiology.


I’m literally turning into my dad.

It’s terrifying.

I used to tease him relentlessly about having the most boring hobbies known to humankind (matchbox and stamp collecting and steam trains).

Now I find myself poring over old postcards in my spare time.

Somehow I’ve become a deltiologist.

I study and collect postcards.

It’s not the coolest chat up line in the world.

The TV legend Ronnie Barker was probably the most famous one of us.

But it brings me enormous pleasure.

Sifting through a fresh batch, learning something about the images or the history, places or people they depict - wonderful!

I’ve collected all kinds of postcards over the years - World War Two posters, fine art, favourite York City players and Hollywood screen idols.

My only rule is that they have to be blank.

Unblemished with pen or pencil.

You see, perhaps unlike other deltiologists who hoard and file them away, I collect them to send them.

Use the cards for their original intention.

I’ve found that as much pleasure as I get from looking at my stash, it’s never as much as the person receiving one through the post.

In our days filled with email and social media messages, there’s nothing like hearing one plop onto the doormat.

So if you’re stuck for a way of cheering up a relative, friend or neighbour in (hopefully) these last days of lockdown - send them a postcard.

Trust me, they’ll love it.

Just don’t start collecting them.

Your kids won't be seen dead with you.


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