A most delightful trip (not)
A hundred years ago the postcard was a favoured medium for quick informal messaging. The limited space, and the idea of quick communication, encouraged a short, informal writing style—having a great time, wish you were here. Perhaps the fact that somebody bought and posted a card said as much as the words written on the back.
Randomly selected samples of these ephemeral messages have survived. Most of them are boring, but there are some quirky gems, with weird and delightful images on the front, and wonderful stamps, captions, and postmarks on the back. Not to mention the messages written on them: profound or trivial, original or formulaic, terse or turgid.
I like this example. On the back, a typically cryptic message, adorned with an exotic stamp and a collection of postmarks. On the front, a photo of a lighthouse at Guantánamo Bay—then, as now, a possession of the United States of America.
With my resolution for 2010 in mind, I have to say I am not so keen to visit this lighthouse (which still survives, in poor condition). Knowing what happened to Lakhdar Boumediene and many others would spoil the visit.