As some of you may remember, my family house in Poland was struck by a lightening during summer 2012. My sister and I were sitting on a sofa in my flat and she got a phone call from a friend saying that our house was on fire...
Naturally, our first reaction was disbelief. The whole situation was very surreal. Luckily nobody was hurt. Our house lost its roof, attic (with all its contents) and some of the first floor. When I arrived home the following year the house was rebuilt and the fire was something we all tried to forget. (Side note: My mum is a superhero, she supervised the whole reconstruction, fought with insurance companies and joked that at least she got to choose the roof colour for the second time, since she wasn't a huge fan of the first choice).
But the story I wanted to share today is about something else.
When I was in primary and secondary school I had many pen friends whom I've met in Christian group I was a part of. We would only see each other during summer camps and occasionally come to visit. I remember coming back from school and running to the post box to see if there were any letters for me.
Over the years I've collected over 100 hand written letters and stored them in a little wooden box. Imagine my surprise when I found that box in my room, after the fire, with one of the sides completely burnt, yet none of the letters missing.
I have no clue how this could have happened. Some letters carry marks of smoke and have charred edges, but none perished in the fire. To me this is unexplainable.
Sometimes when I'm home I make a cup of tea and read those old letters. They're mostly about boys...and our friends, but also about mundane things such as weather, waiting for summer holidays, our favourite bands etc. Such a sweet insight into what my friends and I were like as children and teenagers.
So that's the story. How did my letterbox survive? I will never know. But I like to think that one of the firemen saw it burning and realising its value decided to rescue it from the flames. Just like my wedding dress and bouquet...