From the Smirk Corner

Two experiences from the good old correspondence chess days – experienced by Reinhard Wolfram

Two years ago, my letter carrier rang my doorbell shortly before Easter to return a letter. It had come back from Cologne as undeliverable. She pointed out with surprise that it was still stamped with GDR stamps. When I looked at the return address, I found that it was also still my old address. I have not lived there for 38 years. In the apartment I opened the letter and found out that I had written it on May 17, 1978. The chess friend in Cologne to whom it should go had died 11 years ago.

In 1978 a chess friend from Switzerland visited me. Shortly before leaving, he remembered that he wanted to write a greeting card to a chess friend in Calcutta. Neither he nor I knew the airmail postage. I then told him that he could leave the card with me. The postage would not be so expensive, and I would then go to the post office and have the card stamped. When I asked at the post office counter about airmail postage to India, the lady behind the counter looked up in irritation. Then she took out a thick folder and began frantically searching. After some time, she looked up and asked me if I was pulling her leg. She had now looked through all of Africa, but there would be no country India. Well, I would not necessarily have looked for India in Africa either.

Who has similar curious stories to report? Please send your contributions to Hans-Peter Toedter!