One of my fond memories of elementary school was the introduction of writing with a “cartridge pen.” Fountain pen was the proper term, but we sophisticated writers could relate to the cartridge pen. The pen of the day was the Sheaffer pen—medium point, black ink, no exceptions to the rule. And all papers were to be written with the fountain pen.
I longed for the day when I would get my first real pen. I was so excited. I loved the sound of the pen moving across the paper as I formed my letters and the inconsistency of the ink was just heart-stopping for me.
But the day I absolutely lost all feeling in my toes was the day one of my friends came to class with her “extra” pen, loaded with a cartridge containing Peacock Blue ink. Are you kidding me? Who could afford Peacock Blue ink or a second pen for that matter? As I watched Miss Prissy write all day with that beautiful ink, I vowed that one day that would be my color of ink for my writings—Peacock Blue.
About seven years ago, I was in a general merchandise store that was going out of business after many years. In fact, I think the store was in its second generation of family members who had owned the business. As I was browsing around, my eyes fixed on two bottles of ink, still in the original boxes and covered with dust. You guessed it—Peacock Blue ink. I grabbed them like I had found a 50-carat diamond. Those bottles are now in my desk drawer where I guard them. I boast and say I have the last two bottles of Peacock Blue ink in the free world. And I figured out a method to reload empty cartridges so that I can write occasionally with the priceless liquid. I love to look at the old bottles with the inkwell inside the bottle.
Years passed and my love of fountain pens has never wavered. I have a pen box that I keep on my desk where my pens are stored. They are cherished because most of them have been given to me by special people in my life. My husband, Neal, gave me a beautiful pen for Christmas that I will add to my cherished collection. I love the way ink runs onto the paper and how it needs to dry. I slow down and write just a little better when I have a fountain pen in hand.
When sharing my passion with people, I get mixed reactions and horror stories of ink all over fingers, pens leaking in purses, and being out of ink when you need to write. Others just love fountain pens.
Alexandra Stoddard and I exchanged notes right after her post to this blog. I kept her lovely note written with white ink on navy blue stationery. Oh my, I felt my toes going numb again, just like before. I am thinking my new favorite color of ink will be white.
Please share with me your wonderful stories of writing with your first fountain pen.