Unfolding plans 101 – Take your opportunities when you can

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that the best place to buy a postcard is not the Post Office.  You may find that odd.  I know that I did.  Where else would you go for all things postal?  Well you would be wrong.  The vast majority of post offices don’t sell postcards unless you want the blank ones without pictures.  To be clear I’m talking about picture postcards.

I’m approaching the half way mark through the challenge.  I’m sending a postcard to my youngest daughter every work day during the month of July.  It is as if I am on holiday.  I’m having a workation.  I’m in the groove now.  I know where the best places to find postcards are and it is not necessarily in those establishments that you would expect.  Newsagents don’t necessarily stock postcards of the area.  Neither do card shops.

It all depends upon the type of town or village you are in and whether or not it is somewhere that people would like a reminder of, a souvenir perhaps.  If it is that kind of place then you are fine and if it is not then you are scuppered, at least to an extent.  So places like Durham and Newcastle are sure-fire winners.  Coastal towns that have promenades, such as Seaham (you would think), or picturesque gateway towns, such as Barnard Castle are on the money as well.  Other places are more difficult.

But I’m becoming quite an expert.  Even in the oddest of places you can usually find something.  Museums, places of interest such as castles and ancient monuments, art shops and even some hotels can come up trumps.  The intrepid postcard hunter can end up in some unusual places.   You just have to have a good nose for the best spots and keep looking.  I have become the truffle hound of postcards.

I’ve got a strategy as well.  I’ve planned ahead and identified the places that I am going to that might offer a picturesque reminder of my visit.  If it is a place that I will be going back to then I buy ahead.  I grab a few different cards that I can use on those days when the supply might dry up.  I’ve also picked some up from places that I am only passing through, such as one of the Angel of the North.  I’ve been working five or six days ahead.  It’s not really cheating.  There were no rules in the first place.

They have started to arrive at my daughter’s flat and she is not going to check up.

So are there any lessons in this?  Yes there are.  There are some really big ones which I’m going to draw together once I have pulled off what I set out to do.  I don’t want get carried away as there are still a dozen or so days left.  I don’t want to count my chickens before they are posted.  There are some little ones as well.  Plan ahead.  Learn the tricks quickly.  Take your opportunities when you can and in the words of LJ Rich, celebrate your weird.

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