Pen Pal Friendships
(Page 11 of 14)
When I was in high school, I got a part-time job, and every payday, I would tuck away a little money from my check. When Maureen invited me to visit her in England, I was happy I’d been saving my money. Luckily, I had enough money to accept her invitation.
So, in the summer of 1959, I flew to England, to visit Maureen. It was very exciting, and she and her family took me on a wonderful tour of their country.
Through the years, our letters to one another have included news of marriages, jobs, births of children (including my daughter who was given my pen pal’s name) and grandchildren, and deaths of family members.
I happily returned to England to visit a second time when Maureen and I were both young married women. More recently, we were able to get together again when Maureen came to the United States to see a new grandchild in California.
Maureen and I still keep in touch, and letters are now occasionally supplemented by telephone calls and e-mails. Our long-distance friendship has been a happy part of my life, and it continues to bring me much pleasure and happiness some 58 years after it began.
Romona - Grinnell, Iowa
Special Friendship Survived Cold War in Germany
My experience with pen pals began after World War II, as a school assignment, when I was in fifth grade. I wrote to several girls in Germany and one girl in England. My great-grandparents were from Germany, and I was excited, hoping to learn more about their country. We wrote about our families and sent photos. It was a lot of fun, and we shared our letters with our classmates. It was interesting to learn about the different customs in their countries. We also exchanged a few small gifts.
Then, in 1947, a friend told me her pen pal, who was a boy, had a friend who would like to correspond with someone in the United States. My friend sent my name and address to her pen pal, and he gave it to his friend, Herbert.
A special bond
A few months later, I received a letter and some photographs from Herbert, who lived in the Russian sector of Berlin. We began writing back and forth to each other, and we wrote often. By the time I got into high school, Herbert was my only pen pal.
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