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Fleeting Wonders: Send Holiday Cheer To an Island-Bound Schoolboy

The Out Skerries post office is facing some busy days.

The Out Skerries post office is facing some busy days. (Photo: Dr. Julian Paren/Geograph CC BY-SA 2.0)

Aron Anderson has been called “Britain’s Loneliest Schoolboy.” The only adolescent on the tiny Scottish island of Out Skerries, 10-year-old Anderson spends his days as the sole pupil in a two-room schoolhouse, and his free time biking, swimming, and hanging out with local ducks.

But soon, Anderson can look forward to another hobby–opening sacks full of holiday cards, now en route to him from strangers around the globe.

This postal present is the brainchild of Reddit moderator BesottedScot, who, after reading about Anderson, organized the card drive in order to put a “big massive smile on his face.” He recommends interested parties send their cards today to ensure timeliness, and has compiled a list of guidelines. (He has also called Anderson’s school to warn them of the upcoming onslaught.)

“This is going to be his first winter as the only pupil so it’s hard to tell how it will be for him.”

Posted by The Telegraph on Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Hopefully some of this good cheer will rub off on the adults of Out Skerries, who have had their share of troubles of late. The salmon fishing contract that kept many of them employed expired this year, and air operators recently announced they will no longer send planes to the island. The local secondary school, where Anderson’s brothers and friends once studied, was shuttered in 2013 for budgetary reasons.

After he graduates from his solo schoolhouse, Anderson will rejoin his former classmates in the (relatively) nearby town of Lerwick, which is two and a half hours away by boat.

For now, Anderson enjoys private-island life, though he says the solitude “is quite weird sometimes.” If you’d like to help introduce him to the larger, weirder island that is the Internet, send a card to:

Mr Aron Anderson
c/o Skerries School
United Kingdom
ZE21 9AR

This Out Skerries postbox is ready for some holiday spirit.

This Out Skerries postbox is ready for some holiday spirit. (Photo: Chris Downer/Geograph CC BY-SA 2.0)

Every day, we track down a fleeting wonder—something amazing that’s only happening right now. Have a tip for us? Tell us about it! Send your temporary miracles to edit@atlasobscura.com.