Through Toby's project, we feel like we have made friends all over the world. This means that, whenever anything happens - anywhere at all! - we feel that somebody we know is in danger or trouble. This isn't always easy to explain to a young child, especially if we have no real way to communicate with Toby's writing partners in other countries - other than post, which of course often gets disrupted. Sometimes, though, we get lucky. Like a few days ago. We first learnt Kamal's name when a friend mentioned she might have a contact for us in Nepal...this was early on in Toby's project, back in August 2013. We were given Kamal's Facebook name, and I contacted him with a message, which went unseen for a long time (as Facebook messages from people who are not "Friends" tend to be). We didn't hear anything back...until May this year, when people took to Facebook to ensure friends and families were safe. Kamal came across our message, and responded. To be thought of by somebody else when their own life has been turned upside down is truly humbling. We do not often mention Toby's fundraising, but Toby chose ShelterBox because they go wherever needed, providing emergency care - and right now, they are very busy in Nepal. If you do have a £, a $, a Euro, Yen or anything to spare, you might consider donating it here: https://www.justgiving.com/writingtotheworld/ .
Dear world, we are celebrating THE RETURN OF THE MAP!!! Those of you who were with us from the beginning may remember that we used to have a map where we noted down every country written to, every response received, and every "in progress" contact. Then, after six months, our map provider website disappeared, without warning. We were devastated, and always felt Toby's website wasn't quite the same. Now, however, we have finally discovered an alternative. It is not quite as easy to use, and we have to grab the picture and upload it manually, but that's a small price to pay. We have re-entered all the data, and the key is simple: GREEN means Toby has written to this country *and* received a response, PURPLE means Toby has written to this country and *not* had a response. We have been doing this project for nearly two years now, and it would be lovely if Year No. 3 could be the year where we can turn some more of the purple countries green, so if you happen to know anybody in a purple country, please do ask them to get in touch via http://www.writingtotheworld.com/contact.html (we do, of course, love to hear from all of you!) We did run out of energy, but we promise that a future edition of THE MAP will include States, Territories etc. This is quite a big thing for us, and in the process, we have looked through many of the letters on the website, with very, very fond memories. Thank you, as always, for being a part of our journey!
This blog is mainly a way to keep track of our recipes - for day to day updates, please check out Toby's Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/writingtotheworld