People

A new postcard greeting every day – a very special advent calendar

Christina Pusterla uses her advent calendar to send a pleasant surprise by post to someone new every day.

Claudia Langenegger

Rich Content Section

Christina Pusterla with postcards she’s received.
Christina Pusterla with postcards she’s received. Copyright: Annette Boutellier

“I love postcards”, says Christina Pusterla with a cheerful smile on her face. She loves Christmastime just as much. Four years ago, she wondered how she could combine the two. This gave rise to her very special advent idea: “I make a postcard advent calendar every year”, says Christina. Here’s how it works: she writes the names of 24 friends on slips of paper. “From the first of December, I pull a friend’s name each day – who I then write to.” She sends them her best wishes, reminds them of past encounters, and tells them what they mean to her.

A lovely ritual

“They’re people with whom I’ve experienced something special, who’ve helped me this year or have been doing so for many years,” she says. People who are close to her heart. “Just thinking about all the people I’m writing to is a lovely ritual”, says Christina. As is the act of writing each day: “There’s something very contemplative about it.”

The recipients are always delighted: “So nice of you to think about me”, is how many of them respond. “The mail is unexpected and quite a surprise”, she says. “It’s also really appreciated as hardly anyone writes letters anymore.”

At home, the teacher and theatre worker has a rack full of postcards, which she’s continually adding to – according to the season and how she feels. New ones arrive all the time from friends, besides the ones she buys. “Wherever I am, I look for a shop with postcards.”

Teacher and assistant director

A selection of postcards lying on the table
Christina Pusterla receives postcards in the mail from all around the world. Copyright: Annette Boutellier

Like today in Bern. A Schaffhausen native, Christina Pusterla is visiting the Swiss capital for a few days, a city where she used to live for a couple of years around a decade ago. A trained teacher, she entered the world of theatre back then and helped organize musicals. Today as an assistant director, she works on small and big stages alike – such as at the open-air Thuner Seespiele. But her schedule has been empty since spring as there are currently hardly any shows on. “I’m currently working as a teacher again”, says Christina. “Fortunately!”

Christina Pusterla’s advent calendar has another benefit for her: “It’s of course a good excuse for me to buy postcards!”, she says with a mischievous laugh. And after our friendly chat over coffee in the café, she happily scurries off to Bern’s shopping arcades: her next destination is the gift shop in the upper old town, which has an especially large selection of postcards.

Further inspiration for writing can be found here.

written by

Claudia Langenegger

Editor