From the time I was a little kid, the idea of writing the thank-you-note was engrained in me by my parents. When you got a birthday or Christmas present from family or a friend, or if someone did something particularly nice for you, you hand-write a thank you note and mail it to them. No matter if you said thank-you in person, or over the phone, writing that note was something more meaningful somehow.
A CNN story on the topic has this to say:
“It reinforces the lesson of gratitude and appreciation for others’ time and effort,” says MichÇele O’Reilly, director of the Connecticut School of Etiquette, in Darien, Connecticut
Over the years I’ve probably written dozens, all following a similar 4-5 sentence format while still being heartfelt and sincere. During my childhood, it was a ritual I dreaded but now I do it happily, even though it is a tradition which has largely fallen out of vogue.
And why *has* it fallen out of vogue? Practically none of my friends do it, although they are no less thankful. Perhaps people now see it as wasteful, when you could just send an email instead? Perhaps its a reflection of my Southern roots, part of the culture of politeness? Maybe people are busier and just have less time to hand write notes? Whatever the reason, I find it a worthwhile and polite thing to do. Am I alone in my thank-you-noting?