What happens if you send a care package and you don't hear back from the recipient? What does it mean? Would the package have been intercepted on the way to Afghanistan or is it just that whomever received it didn't care enough to reply to your note inside?
I heard from someone who is getting a bit disheartened because they've sent a few care packages over to Afghanistan, but have never received any sort of acknowlegdement that the parcels have arrived.
My policy with correspondence in care packages is that if I hear back, I hear back. If I don't, I don't.
I'm not very good at writing cover letters, but one thing I always conclude it with is that any replies are welcomed, but not necessary.
Sometimes I get a response, sometimes I don't.
Don't get me wrong, it's a buzz getting a reply, and knowing that a soldier has gotten himself a small piece of home out of the blue, but I don't have to have one.
The conditions over there are nothing like home, so internet access, and the ability to actually utilise it aren't exactly what I have here (Bigpond adsl - mine works a treat and I couldn't live without it).
Another point is that a lot of military folk aren't really that into the internet, so sending an email is just a bit much. Especially when composing a letter to someone you wouldn't know if you tripped over them.
One of the reasons I've not posted any replies from Afghanistan is that I don't post private correspondence without permission. When I do get permission, I'll be happy to show that yes, the care packages do get to where we send them.
We're just used to the instant gratification of today's communications, I suspect, and as a result our expectations may be a bit higher than we realise.
Basically, don't feel disheartened if you don't get a response straight away. You'll just open your inbox one day and find a few lines from someone you've never heard of, reminding you of a care package you sent and forgot about.
That's what's happened to me.
Keep up the good work.