My maternal grandfather was a college professor. In the 1950’s he decided to go to England for his sabbatical. He and my grandma went by sea (He never trusted airplanes, and had never flown!). This was my grandma’s first trip overseas, and she was very excited and intrigued by everything.
Once in England, while grandpa was involved with his research activities, grandma busied herself with craft classes. In one of them, she became good friends with an Englishwoman – a Mrs. Ivory.
Even after my grandparents returned home to (then) Ceylon, grandma and Mrs. Ivory kept up a correspondence. They wrote back and forth several times a year, until the late 1970’s. By that time Ceylon was Sri Lanka, and I was in the picture.
Then, the letters stopped coming. My grandma feared the worst. One day, a letter arrived from England, in unfamiliar handwriting and with an unfamiliar return address. It was from Mrs. Ivory’s daughter, informing my grandma (whom she had never met) of her mother’s death. “Mother told me about your beautiful saris” she wrote. Mrs. Ivory had preserved two decades of letters from my grandmother, and her daughter had found them all carefully bundled up while going through the mother’s belongings.
Story by Deepthi Amarasuriya from Quora