31 October 2015

Happy Halloween


Postcard sent by Bryon (the USA). On the back it says that it is an anonymous illustration from 1912.

30 October 2015

Batman Stamps


I received this letter from Bryon (the USA) some months ago. I think these Batman stamps are just perfect for Halloween mail, don't you?

At first sight I thought that the round ones were not real stamps (And I am not the only one...See the comments).




And I have just remembered that I had got more Batman stamps. These ones were issued in 2006 as a part of a comic series.

29 October 2015

3,75 Dirhams


From the series Strange things that happen in Morocco:

The postage stamps within the country cost 3,75 dirhams. Or, coins of 0,05 dirhams do not exist any more, nor the coins of 0,01 dirhams. Well, they say that those coins circulate, but I have never seen any of them. Notice that 0,05 dirhams are equivalent to 0,005 €... So it would not be not really useful anyway for shopping.

So, how could you pay a single stamp? Well, you cannot. You must pay 3,70 or 3,80 (what I do is buying at least two stamps, so I pay 7,5 dirhams). It is not a substantial difference, of course. But let me say that it is a nonsense...

28 October 2015

Fishus Globetrottus


Letter sent (and re-sent, because it was returned the sfirst time) to Heleen (the Netherlands). You can see all the details in her Weird Existing Animals blog.

27 October 2015

Is That All You Can Bring to Me?

«I handed her mail to her.
'BILLS! BILLS!' she screamed. 'IS THAT ALL YOU CAN BRING ME? THESE BILLS?'
'Yes, ma'am, that's all I can bring you.' I turned and walked on.»

Charles Bukowski, Post Office

26 October 2015

Black & White Whimsical Postcards

Porto S. Stefano, 1923
Sender: Bruno (Italy)

Passage du Lido, Paris, 1953 by Daniel Frasnay
Sender: Heleen (the Netherlands)

Sorting of mail by the Army Post Office, First World War, c1916
Sender: John (the UK)

25 October 2015

War Stamps

The theme for today's Sunday Stamps-II is Commemorating a battle or a disaster. This is not my favourite topic, but I have recently received some interesting stamps about.


American Revolutionary WarWar of 1812 / Red Cloud's War


The War of 1812 was a military conflict, lasting for two and a half years, fought by the United States of America against the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. T

The first stamp commemorates the final of it, the Battle of New Orleans, and was issued on January 8, 2014 (more information). The second stamp was issued on September 13, 2014 and its subject is the bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland two hundred years before (More information).

The following stamp does not commemorate a battle, but the leader of the Red Cloud's War, an armed conflict between the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, and Northern Arapaho on one side and the United States in Wyoming and Montana territories from 1866 to 1868.

Sybil Ludington was a heroine of the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783). The commemorative stamp was issued on March 25, 1975, belonging to a set of four (more information). I have read here that "Inscriptions on the back of each stamp (in emerald green; under the gum) briefly tell the story of the individual featured on the front of the stamp".

This postcard was a great lesson of USA history!

24 October 2015

Where Is the Regular Carrier?

«The voices of the people were the same, no matter where you carried the mail you heard the same things over and over again.
'You're late, aren't you?
'Where's the regular carrier?'
'Hello, Uncle Sam!'
'Mailman, Mailman! This doesn't go here!'»

Charles Bukowski, Post Office

23 October 2015

22 October 2015

Sending Leaves by Mail

I have just learned that there is a company that mails you Autumn Foliage collected in New England. From 20 USD: three colour balanced leaves (red, yellow and mixed-colour), specially preserved to last for years. Ah, and you can choose the size. Only grade A leaves! 

Are you surprised? Well, there is another company who ships... snow. Not from New England, but from Boston. Just in case you cannot afford a fridge.



Eutrapèlia (the USA), sent me this postcard celebrating autumn and the reading men. The paper foliage seems colour-balanced enough to me. And I bet they are grade A leaves!

21 October 2015

Postcard from Thailand


Postcard sent by Jobbo (Thailand). It is not so usual that I receive mail from that country! I love the picture. It shows the Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram, a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, also known as the marble temple. Construction of the temple began in 1899 at the request of King Chulalongkorn after building his palace nearby. Actually, the temple's name literally means The Temple of the fifth King located nearby Dusit Palace. It was designed by Prince Naris, a half-brother of the king.

Take a look at the stamps:

20 October 2015

Bpost


Some weeks ago I was in Brussels (Belgium). Like in Greece, I was surprised to see that almost all the mail boxes in the street have been vandalised. That is not common in Spain, nor in Morocco.

Also, the difficulty of finding a real post office astonished me. Finally, I bought the stamps at a newsagent.

PS Have you noticed the big slots on the boxes?!?

19 October 2015

Blue Teas


Handmade postcard sent by Laura (the UK). I answered her with this also handmade envelope. Actually, it was made of the same stationery catalogue as her postcard. 

Do you like them? Do you answer with the same kind of stationery? (I usually don't. This is coincidental.)

17 October 2015

A Place Worth Visiting

Do not you feel like visiting a place, when you receive some postcards from there? Laura (the UK) has recently sent these from York:

THE SHAMBLES
Medieval butchers traded in this thoroughfare. 
Meat was kept out of direct sunlight by the tall 
and narrow design. The street is mentioned in 
the Domesday Book of 1806.


YORK MINSTER
Left: The Nave 
Right: St. Williams College and York Minster from the East

16 October 2015

The Camel


This altered postcard is my contribution to the mail art call The Camel (Spain). Deadline is October 30, so you can still participate.

15 October 2015

Fashion Mail Boxes



Five Spanish pillar boxes were elegantly dressed last week, to celebrate the Alicante Fashion Week. They were redesigned by five participants in the show, and stood up in different streets of Alacant. Once finished, they will be yellow again. 

Do you like the idea and the designs?

14 October 2015

Reading Women


Two postcards sent by Bryon (the USA) that make a great addition to the ReadingWomen album

Above: Two on the Aisle, a work by American painter Edward Hopper, whose work I really admire. About this painting, you can read in the Wikipedia: "His Two on the Aisle (1927) sold for a personal record $1,500, enabling Hopper to purchase an automobile, which he used to make field trips to remote areas of New England."

Below: Lesende Frau (II.), by Quint Buchholz



And a third reading woman postcard sent by John (the UK): Repose, by French painter Jacques Cancaret.

12 October 2015

Multiple Priests


Postcard sent by Micu (Hungary). I love multiples on postcards, you know. You can find all kind of elements repeated on a postcard. But, honestly, I did not expect to find exactly these. Priests is a work by Danish artist Martin Bigum.

By the way: the stamp on the back was a rubber stamp.

11 October 2015

Japan Week - 3


And to finish up that Japan Week, I have received these stamps from FinnBadger (the USA), issued jointly by the US Postal Service and Japan Post on April 10, 2015. The stamps feature images of flowering dogwood and honour the connection between both countries on the centennial of the gift of dogwood trees from the USA to Japan in 1915. More information about this issue.

In 2012, the USPS celebrated the centennial of Japan's original gift of cherry blossom trees from Tokyo to Washington DC with the Cherry Blossom Centennial Forever stamps. I also received them:


This is also a post for Sunday Stamps II. The theme today is Flowers.

10 October 2015

Japan Week - 2


Letter sent from Japan to Morocco. However, the sender comes from Germany, the receiver from Spain. And they communicate in French. That is called international mail.

I think the stamp is just perfect. It belongs to the series of four issued in October 9, 2013, to commemorate the International Letter Writing Week. Its an annual issue (since 1958), with the aim of contributing to the world peace by encouraging cultural exchange amongst people of the world through letter writing.

The images are taken from The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō, a series of woodcut prints by the Japanese artist Utagawa Hiroshige (1797 – 1858), inspired by his own journey along the Tokaido road. It features Odawara, 9th posting station.

09 October 2015

Japan Week - 1

Some weeks ago, I had my particular Japan Week thanks to mail...


Do you know the Gotochi cards?
Gotochi cards are designed and released by the Japanese Postal System, and each one of them represents a place in Japan - hence the name 'gotochi', which means 'local'. They showcase Japanese symbols (which might be local dishes, costumes, monuments, landscapes, etc.) on a national and regional level, in a brightly coloured and fun cartoon.
Gotochi cards have a couple of unique features that make them special. First of all, they are not perfect rectangles, but in fact take on the shape of their picture. Also, each card not only has a cartoon picture on it, but also the name of the place that is depicted in the image. Every prefecture has multiple cards, which might be one of the reasons that collecting them has taken off and became such a popular hobby! (Taken from the Postcrossing blog).
I had seen many, many, many of these cards on the net. But I had not received any of them until the twin of this one landed in my mailbox. It arrived from Japan... after a short layover in Heleen's mailbox (the Netherlands). It was beautifully stamped on the back:

07 October 2015

Surprise ATC


Envelope made and sent by Eric (France), made of a colouring page (coloured with Copic markers). It included an ATC and a postcard.

05 October 2015

Tea and/or Coffee?


Postcard sent by Mélissa (Canada).



Handmade collage postcard sent by PostMuse (the USA).



Mini postcard sent by Gina (the UK).

04 October 2015

Landscape with Stamps

I was not sure about what to share for this week's Sunday Stamps -II, the topic being very general: Scenery...


This is a big postcard sent by Heleen (the Netherlands), drawn and collaged on the backside of a calendar. I like the drawing, and specially I look how she was able to create a scenery using the stamps. Yes, also the post office contributed with the ink... Very difficult to postmark, wasn't it?

Also, the windmills are a favourite of mine. One of them belongs to the set of Dutch Icons issued on January 2, 2014:



Le Moulin de la Galette and La Butte de Montmartre are Van Gogh paintings from 1886. As stamps, they belongs to one of the many Dutch series dedicated to this artist: City and Village.


03 October 2015

World's Largest Ball of Stamps


I have just discovered that in Boys Town (Nebraska, the USA) there is the reputed World's Largest Ball of Stamps*. It measures 80 cm in diameter, weighs about 270 kg, and is estimated to have over four million of cancelled stamps.

The origins of the ball date back to 1953. The Boys Town Stamp Collecting started to stick the less valuable stamps on a golf ball, layer upon layer. It must have been and exceptionally cold and boring winter. The ball reached its current size by July 1955.

---
*Someone claims he saw a bigger one in Topeka (Kansas, the USA). Maybe he refers to the World's Largest Ball of Twine (It seems there is some big balls obsession around the world...).

02 October 2015

Britain’s Clever Bees Stamps


After some letters seeing this postmark on my letters from the UK... I have finally received some bees. I felt really curious about!

Letter sent by Laura (the UK)