I mentioned yesterday that I had some updates for you, and I don’t want to keep you waiting. First up is a pad of paper I found in Tesco Lotus. What made this paper special to me wasn’t the smooth texture of the paper, although that was nice. And it wasn’t the ease of which the pages tear from the pad, although that was a handy feature when writing my letters home. No, it was the simple name of the pad that struck me most.
While in Thailand on a previous trip, I met a young boy named Anee. Anee has Down syndrome. I’d never had close contact with someone with Down syndrome; I did what most people do: Avoid them because I didn’t know anything about the disease. They look different. They act different. And that rubs us the wrong way.
But when I got to know Anee, and when I realized that he has never met a stranger, and that he will love you ’till the day you die, and is always ready to speak with you, I knew there was something special about him. I fell in love with this little boy with Down syndrome, and began spending a lot of time with him.
Anee couldn’t pronounce my name right. None of the kids could, really, but Anee had his own way of saying it: “Ala peh”. Which is almost exactly how you say “elephant” in Thai. So Surat, another boy there, took to calling me “Elephant” as a joke. When I went back to Thailand this summer I didn’t get to see Anee (he had moved to another part of the state), but I did get to see Surat again. He still remembered my nick-name, and still called me by it.
A couple weeks later I started looking for paper — knowing I had a newsletter coming up — and started to hit the stores. And it was then that I found this notepad, which just happened to be named after me:
The main thing I was looking for in a paper was how it felt in the hand. I wanted something thin, light, and very smooth. The Elepad is a traditional A4 with an 80 grams per square meter weight rating, so the first two features are taken care of. And I’ve already mentioned how incredibly fine the texture is on the page. The ruling on this paper is faint; visible, but barely, with a tone of heather blue:
On some papers I found the ruling shouts at you, but not with the Elepad. This was a bonus I wasn’t even shopping for. Add to that the paper isn’t pure white, but almost bluish in appearance, and you’ve got a very comfortable backdrop for your writing.
Coming up next week is the pencil I bought at the same time, and I’ll show you some photos of how well that lead goes with this paper. And if you’re ever in Thailand in search of a good ruled A4, consider this one. It gets high marks from me. And not just for the name.