With love from Brisbane (1988)

with love from Brisbane

Dear H & S, Glad postal strike is over at last. Sue and I have just arrived here after 18 hour bus journey from Townsville. We’ve just been to the koala park and had our photos taken cuddling koalas – how touristy!!  John will be here in a couple of days and by then hopefully I will have found the airport. Falling desperately in love with Australia and travelling – just have to hope John does too.  Lots of love Marion x

This card is postmarked 30 Sept 1988 and it would appear that there had been a postal strike in Australia, which must have been very frustrating (this was before electronic communication was universally accessible).

The stamp is from the set of 29 different cartoons depicting aspects of Australian life, issued in 1988

Marion has travelled to Brisbane, home of World Expo 88

Marion is waiting for my brother to arrive for their road trip. Reading this now, with the benefit of hindsight and life experience, I cannot believe I did not notice that Marion is clearly not ready to settle down to married life. She made the strong decision to cancel the wedding and follow her own path. Heartbreaking as it was at the time, for all of us, it was the right choice for her.

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with love from Keswick (1979)

Keswick 1979

Dear Hilary, Ged here in Keswick and believe it or not its sunny for a change. Ta for your letter and postcard from up North. As you can see I’m in Keswick still but I go home on the 6th of September to my new house the address of which is 14 …. I’ve got to work till next Thursday so I’ll write a proper letter then from ….. So I’ll be able to tell you all my news then, tarra for now. Gerard xx P.S Don’t think much of the hotel on the other side. P.S.S. Hope you had a nice holiday! xx

Here’s another postcard being used to update an address change.  It’s amazing how often we all did that, back in the day! It is unclear whether Ged is staying in the hotel or working in it – the latter I suspect. Either way he’s obviously not a fan, despite the ‘warm welcome, courtesy and friendliness’ promised in print at the bottom!

Sunshine in Keswick is, of course, worthy of a comment 🙂  My postcard to him was from even further ‘up North’ – our family holiday that year was spent driving and camping round the north coast of Scotland.

Postmarked ‘KESWICK 11.30am 31 AUG 1979 CUMBRIA’, this card was posted exactly 37 years ago today! The other postmark is the old favourite ‘REMEMBER to use the POST CODE!’ which he hasn’t.

The card carries 10p worth of stamps which is approximately 52p today (2016).

This is three years after Ged and I first met and the correspondence was still fairly regular; these were the days long before texts, emails, Whatsapp, Facebook; when there were only 3 channels on UK tv and expensive long distance phone calls were made by special appointment and only with permission of the bill payer (Dad), who was generally sat in the same room listening in! Letter writing was the only option 🙂 

with love from Ireland (1986)

With love from Ireland

Firstly, Belated congrats. Hope you’re both enjoying plenty of bliss! Well we’re now at the end of the Irish Tour 86. We’ve seen lots of Ireland like Dublin, Wexford, Waterford, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and back to Dun Laoghaire. Just about every place featured overleaf I’d say. As you’d expect we’ve dabbled a bit with the Guinness and checked out lots of cousins and generally speaking had a great time. Might see you if we come down for Sunderlands’ game at Portsmouth. Lots of love Gerard and the lads on hols!

An enthusiastic status update from the Emerald Isle where ‘Gerard and the lads’ obviously enjoyed themselves 🙂

Postmarked ‘DUN LAOGHAIRE 1.30pm 2 AUG 1986’ the card carries another, barely legible, postmark asking ‘are you on the VOTERS LIST…’

The 24p stamp features Cormac Chapel and is part of the Irish Architecture series issued between 1982 and 1990

Amazingly, this card was sent some ten years after we met on holiday as young teenagers! The card is addressed to both me and Simon and acknowledges our recent wedding; however, we did not meet up for Sunderland v Portsmouth. The good news is that I have now re-connected with Gerard and we have exchanged several emails. He (and his wife) still live 300 miles away, but we are thinking about planning a get together in conjunction with next season’s football fixtures 🙂 

with love from Southborough, Kent (1981)

with love from Kent

Hello there its me here working far too hard in boring Kent. Just thought I’d send a post card. The journey back was o.k. The test on Monday was alright, nothing to worry about! Going home tomorrow thank God! I will be in touch in the near future.  Love Gerard. xx P.S. Does this count as a letter

Similar to the other card from Southborough this one is dated earlier the same year, carrying the postmark ‘TUNBRIDGE WELLS 6.45pm 15 JAN 1981 KENT’ together with the detailed Pantiles postmark.

This card again features David Salomon‘s house, which in the 1980’s was a regional conference and training centre.

Since I’ve got several cards featuring this building I’m assuming that Gerard was based there for some reason. The text suggests that he’d been to visit me and this must have been the final time that we met, although correspondence continued for several more years. To date I have not managed to reconnect with Gerard…