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Zig's Amazing Postcard to Chiho Saito

In June 2004, I wrote a short fan postcard to Chiho Saito, care of her publisher. It was an entertaining and educational exercise in Japanese postal addressing and elementary letter forms.

The next day, the post card arrived back in my own mailbox, returned to sender. The US Postal service has international addressing requirements, including all addresses written out in roman characters, or at least a romanized translation beneath each Japanese (or any non-roman) address line. So I filled out an envelope, using acceptable international addressing forms, dropped the postcard into the envelope, and tried again.

The postcard I sent is below. Translated, (I hope) it reads:

Dear SAITO Chiho-sama. How are you?

I love looking at your art and reading your stories. I have read "Kanon" and "S to M no Sekai", but "Revolutionary Girl Utena" is my favorite manga and anime.

Actually, I am studying Japanese in order to read Utena. So for that, thank you very much.

postcard front

postcard back

I never really expected to hear back, but apparently even world-famous manga-ka (or their assistants) take the time to write back! In January 2006, 18 months after I initially sent my little fan postcard, SAITO Chiho-sama wrote back! I received the card below:

Chiho Saito 2006 postcard front

Chiho Saito 2006 postcard back

A larger 1280x869 version of the postcard is here (132KB).

The handwritten note on the postcard says:


(Thank you for your letter. Please keep reading!)