14 December 2017

It Is a Pastime

«On n'est pas sérieux quand on écrit des cartes postales. Ce n'est pas un devoir, c'est un jeu; ce n'est pas un emploi, c'est un passe-temps.
[...]
Si écrire des cartes postales est un jeu, les expédier peut s'avérer une épreuve. On peine parfois à acheter des timbres, on a du mal à trouver une boîte aux lettres.»

Sébastien Lapaque, Théorie de la carte postale

13 December 2017

Saint Lucy's Day


Heleen (the Netherlands) has sent me this postcard from one of my favourite illustrators: Inge Löök (see my album!). It shows the procession of Saint Lucy's Day. That is what the Wikipedia  says about:
In Scandinavia, where Saint Lucy is called Santa Lucia in Norwegian and Sankta Lucia in Swedish, she is represented as a lady in a white dress (a symbol of a Christian's white baptismal robe) and red sash (symbolizing the blood of her martyrdom) with a crown or wreath of candles on her head. In Norway, Sweden and Swedish-speaking regions of Finland, as songs are sung, girls dressed as Saint Lucy carry cookies and saffron buns in procession, which "symbolizes bringing the light of Christianity throughout world darkness."
In my country there are also some traditions associated to Saint Lucy. Maybe one of the most known is the Fira de Santa Llúcia, a Christmas street fair held next to the cathedral in Barcelona since 1786. (In case you are interested: 12 curious facts about the Santa Llúcia Fair)

12 December 2017

I Dislike Some Mail Adventures

Back in October, these letters arrived, apparently, after they had been opened and re-sealed (!?).


10 December 2017

Sunday Stamps | S(kate)

Today theme/letter in Sunday Stamps-II is S.

I have been surprised lately by a lot of people from around the world skating on the stamps I have got (?!).

Canada


The Netherlands





Portugal


The USA





(Update: I have just read here that these ice hockey stamps belong to a joint series of stamps put on circulation by the USA and the Canada postal administrations on 20 October 2017.)

09 December 2017

Double Postcard

My family sent me a postcard from the Dalí Theatre-Museum. I have visited it at least twice, and I guess I will find a lot of wonderful details the next time. Salvador Dalí's works are really amazing. 


Even the postcard is surprising (sorry the picture is too dark). You can see the museum. Then, you pull the rim...


... and another picture appears. Sort of magic! The title of this painting of 1952 is Galatea of the Spheres.


You can visit Postcards for the Weekend to see more postcards of Museums and Universities.

08 December 2017

The Greater Pentail & Other Birds


I am glad to have received the detailed illustrations of two birds difficult to spot. Rarely Spotted Curtail or Dimwit, also named after... me (!!).

And my favourite on the back of the envelope: The Greater Pentail. Sadly, it is an endangered species: "This species is now quite rare, due to a large numbers having their tails stolen by Postcrossers". 



From John's Personal Bird Encyclopaedia.  You can see two more interesting birds on Heleen's blog.

I almost forgot to show you another bird on the stamp: the Goldcrest (Regulus regulus).

07 December 2017

Christmas Greetings 2016






Two Christmas envelopes sent last year to Phillip (the USA) and Eric (France), made of a catalogue of stationery. Actually, I made a lot more, but forgot to take pictures before sending them.

05 December 2017

03 December 2017

Sunday Stamps | R(odin)


I think this stamp deserve a whole post, because it is superbe in person. It is dedicated to the French sculptor Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), designed and engraved by Elsa Catelin, from the famous marble sculpture Le Baiser (The Kiss). It was issued on 15 September 2017.

It arrived on a letter from Catherine (France). She had clearly written the name of the country on the envelope. But, apparently, somebody in the post office thought it was difficult to read, and added a bigger Morocco (?).


Go to Sunday Stamps - II to see more R stamps!

01 December 2017

Or a Grey One?


Envelope painted with watercolour pencils, and coffee-related postcards, sent to Heleen (the Netherlands).

29 November 2017

Autumn in Burgos


Sierra de Atapuerca Promenade in Burgos (Spain), showing its beautiful Autumn colours.

Postcard sent by Laura (Spain). 

27 November 2017

The Tulips Travel Slowly


It took me a while to upload the picture of this letter sent by Fabienne (France). But sure, less time that it took the letter to arrive... 

It was posted on 27 March, and I found it in my postbox on 5 October. That must possibly be a kind of reverse record!

Anyway, it was a wonderful theme that included not only tulips (a catalogue!), but also nice stamps and postmarks. And, inside, some spring stamps (as it was intended as a spring letter!)and a postcard with this nice girl, who could easily be Little Red Riding Hood...

26 November 2017

Sunday Stamps | Q(aboos)


Qaboos bin Said Al Said (Arabic: قابوس بن سعيد آل سعيد) is the Sultan of Oman. He is the longest serving Arab leader, having held the office since 1970. The stamp above was issued on 9 Novembre 2011 to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of Sultan Qaboss University, the only public university in the Sultanate of Oman.

The stamp below, issued on 3 November 2012, celebrates the Sultan Qaboos Award for Sailing. It shows the golden trophy. It is a very impressive stamp, golden printed and with certain relief.


Q isn't an easy letter! See more Q-stamps on Sunday Stamps-II.

25 November 2017

24 November 2017

Literary Postcards

Maria chose the theme Books/Reading/Authors for today's Postcards for the Weekend. I receive often postcards related to literature. These are the latest I have got, all sent by Laura (the UK):


Have you recognized Kazuo Ishiguro? He has been awarded  the Nobel Prize in Literature this year. The painter of this portrait from the National Portrait Gallery was Peter Edwards, in 1995. 



Hall's Bookshop, in Tunbridge Wells (the UK). On the back of the postcard:
Ruben Hall began trading books in Chapel Place in 1898. In 1919 he was joined by an apprentice, Harry Pratley (president of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association 1959-60), who created one of the finest bookshops in the South Est. Today the shop is run by another past-president, Adrian Harrington.


Dickens House  is a museum  that displays many artefacts relating to Charles Dickens and his life in Broadstairs (the UK).


-----
My album of postcards of Bookshops & Libraries
My album of postcards of Writers
My album dedicated to Charles Dickens

23 November 2017

Lighthouses from Bulgaria


John (the UK), besides the hand-painted lighthouse, added some beautiful lighthouse stamps to this envelope. It is always a pleasure to receive such combination. By the way, have you realised that the line at the bottom of any stamp represent the way its light flashes?

Inside the envelope, among some postcards, I found this sheet of lighthouse stamps from Bulgaria:


It made me double happy, as usually I don't receive mail from that country. Actually, the only Bulgarian postcard I have received so far (thanks to Postcrossing), features one of the lighthouses of this sheet.

21 November 2017

20 November 2017

All You Need Is Words

«Il pensait à ceux qui se désolaient de n'avoir pas d'idées pour écrire leurs cartes postales, il pensait d'abord a eux. Avant toute instruction, tout avertissement, toute réflexion ou toute remarque, il fallait leur rappeler qu'on n'écrivait pas des cartes postales avec des idées mais avec des mots, des jolis mots de tous les jours.»

Sébastien Lapaque, Théorie de la carte postale

19 November 2017

Sunday Stamps | P(enguins)

When I thought I hadn't any stamp for the theme P of Sunday Stamps-II, I found some penguins...

French stamp dedicated  to the commemoration of the 150th birthday of Jean-Baptiste Charcot (1867-1936), medical doctor an polar explorer. Stamp issued on 24 April 2017.


Argentina issued this stamp on 2011, on a set dedicated to the XXXIV Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting. The penguin here is a Pygnoscelis papua or gentoo penguin. (Here a better view of the set.)


Stamp issued for the 100th anniversary of Burger's Zoo in Anhem (the Netherlands), showing a pair of Spheniscus demersus or African penguin. It belongs to an interesting set issued in 2013.


I had already published this one, a Eudyptes chrysolophus or macaroni penguin, arrived from South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands. This stamp was issued on 25 October 2015, and it belongs to a set of four penguins. 


The postmark makes it almost invisible, but there is a penguin on this Spanish stamp dedicated to the Spanish military shelter established on Deception Island in 1989. The shelter is named after the navigator and explorer Gabriel de Castilla. (More information and a bigger picture of the stamp)


Stamp issued by USPS on 1 June 2015, that pays tribute to the majestic Aptenodytes forsteri or emperor penguin. (More information)

18 November 2017

Teariffic


Now this postcard made me smile...

And, for want of a more traditional postcard... Can I add this one to the theme Food & Beverage of Postcards for the Weekend?

Sent by Heleen (the Netherlands).

17 November 2017

Autumn Letter


Hand-painted envelope (with watercolour pencils), sent to Laura (the UK).