Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Instrument and the Ink

As a child I received certain limits. No make-up until I was thirteen. No pierced ears until junior high. No stockings until I was twelve. One thing I distinctly recall from my years at Fall Creek Elementary… I could not wait until I reached 5th grade, for THEN, I would be able to write my assignments in fountain pen! Could life get any better? Legal handwriting with an ink pen! By 6th grade, my parents transferred me to a college prep girl’s school. The trendy uniform was gray! Drabness! No one would be graduating with an art degree from this “plain” institution…however…this was the 60’s and rebellion was the theme…hence, the gals who befriended me, influenced my wild streak and introduced me to a new drug for my Schaeffer fountain pen…
Peacock Blue Ink! I had died and gone to heaven! But, like most finds in junior high and high school, monotony wears thin, and soon my fountain pen and peacock blue ink, found its way to the back corner of my desk drawer…surely to be empathic with the Woody character in Toy Story.
By the time life fast forwarded to 2002 and the entire “special” paper incident, I began to search for that old fountain pen…but too many moves and “spring cleans” had caused its disappearance. I relocated my exact fountain pen; Sheaffer, at that, at a Staples Store…but blue and black inks were my only choices.
I must have talked about my beloved Peacock Blue Ink more than I realized or a more accurate assumption would be that I have a very attentive husband with a good listening ear. For Christmas 2003, I opened a small square box from my hubby. It had intrigued me as I usually make multiple scans for new gifts appearing closer to the 25th! When I opened my present…I was in shock! I was breathless! I said “where, where did you find these?” “On the internet” my husband replied. It had never occurred to this technically challenged gal to check such a source, but this gem of a man had bought me 5 boxes of peacock blue ink! It took me back in time…to fun…to a love…both of writing and a privilege…it was comfort in a Sheaffer ink cartridge box. I used this special ink on and off for the next several years…but then we moved and all of our “stuff” moved and got stored and moved again and then “stuff” finds a way to hide at times. Well, just a few months ago, I was rummaging thru my old dresser drawers and stumbled on a box…containing some old notes and then…my peacock ink! I currently have some fabulous fountain pens that I only use black ink in…but while in Wheaton, IL last week, Kel and I visited our “art” shop…and a must have purchase was a $5.78 Sheaffer fountain pen…just like the one from 5th grade.
Ink is important. Probably more so to the writer…but I find it an integral part to letter writing…speck so. The point I am trying to make is that from my experience… a joy in the handwritten letter is found in the instrument used and the ink that flows. As in most things in life, you must make the most of every moment or it will just “pass you by.” I believe there is a significance in peacock blue for me just as there is an incredible effervescence of thrill that comes to me when I pick up the fountain pen that my three daughters gifted me one year for mother’s day and the special pen that my parents gifted me because they purchased it from Dr. Whitney’s favorite store…the price of such a treat could equal that of a small mortgage payment! It IS the experience…it IS the story from within the heart that makes the letter “sing!”

1 comment:

  1. There is something about your description of fountain pens and peacock blue ink that is making me want to own some as well! I never knew the history of either of those, but your obsessive desire for both makes much more sense now. what a fun story to think back on, and what a great husband with a wonderful listening ear!