“…but you’re the one who write me most,thank you” –a HOORAY from HK

After just over a week in the ether, a card I mailed to a Postcrosser in Hong Kong has found its way to its destination.  I love what the recipient writes in her “hooray” message:

Hooray Message

It’s all about that P.S.:

p.s.This is the 15th postcard I recieve but you’re the one who write me most,thank you///”

This is a recurring theme here in my silly blog, because it’s a recurring theme for me in the hobby of postcard trading: for me, it’s ALL about the message.  When I flip a card over, and see a bunch of white space on the back, with not much more than “Happy Postcrossing,” “Good Luck,” or “have a good life,” my heart sinks.

Let’s have a peek into each other’s cultures, locales, days, something.  The message needn’t even be personal, but can’t it be something?  Postcrossing even tries to help its participants in answering the question, “what should I write on the postcard?” They provide a long list that is by no means all-encompassing of the possibilities. You can tell from the Hooray message above what I wrote to my correspondent in HK.

I am so happy that my small attempts to provide a happy Postcrossing experience with another user have hit the mark.  I hope she will pay it forward!


Gong Xi Fa Cai! Received from Taiwan

I love this Lunar New Year greeting I just received from Taipei, Taiwan!


This came my way in a Postcrossing Forum “Taiwan Meets the World” tag thread, and just in time: I saw some photos of Year of the Monkey postcards online this morning, and was wishing I would receive some.  The actual card is even nicer than my phone-created collage makes it look: it is in light, painterly pastels, and there are more fish (and monkey’s tail) on the right side of the card. Heck, this image doesn’t even show all of the stamps–or any of the funny washi tape, which has little people sporting fruit heads. Not very good archiving on my part, but this is one postcard I intend to keep around!

Double Chunk: Received from the U.S.


A trio in via swap-bot:


“Aged Vanilla” — that’s my rap name.

The big card with the people on it is from Fort Myers, Florida, and the sender refers to the person responsible for this colorized, captioned image: “I am a big fan of Nick Bantock and his offbeat sense of humor… I’m also a fan of the Naughty Little People series, for the photographer’s irreverent and humorous take on sometimes risque situations.  I like things that surprise me while also making me laugh or causing a wry smile.”

The other two are chunk-of-cardboard trades.  By the way, you should see the stack of rescued-from-the-recycling “chunks” I have right now, ready to cut into postcard-size.  Heck, I guess you WILL see them at some point–if you stay tuned.

That panel from a package of tempting-looking chocolate comes from somewhere around Savannah, Georgia.  This swapper asks me, “have you ever listened to ‘La Mer’ by Nine Inch Nails?  It is a beautiful instrumental piece of music!”  I love the puffy fish stickers on the back of her card.

The cream soda card–and take a hard look at the scan & see the embossing–came from a swapper in Saint Paul, Minnesota, who says, “for 2016 I would like to do some decluttering around the house.”

Stamps, stamps, stickers, washi tape & embossery:


As a sea life fan, I love those puffy fish stickers.  As an elephant lover, I hate that stamp & the circus it represents.

What a Stinker: Sent to Germany, Hong Kong, & Russia

Went on a Postcrossing spree, & drew 3 names:


The SpongeBob card goes to a Civil Engineering student in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.  She had this very card in her favorites, so I was glad I had one to send.  On the back, I wrote of coastal things!

The Postcrosser in Hong Kong had very few favorites marked, but one of them was a movie poster card that reminded me I had something similar in my stash.  This person is new to the service, & doesn’t write a whole lot about herself personally, but I like the little emoji she makes when she mentions what a nice place her city is:  O(∩_∩)O

So cool!

Lastly, there’s the Postcrosser in Werder, Germany.  What a stinker.  This person keeps an updated list of expired postcards she has sent out, with the notation, “expired postcards make me sad. :(“  Her list includes the user names, which of course are searchable, so we can all find these alleged scofflaws.  Has this sender ever considered the very likely possibility that the card’s recipient is not the problem?  Furthermore, what possible good could these lists ever do?

84-day-old Dill Sauce: Received from Czech Republic & U.S.A.


Golly!  I did a double-take after I registed that Postcrossing card on the right, and learned that it took 84 days to get to me! It was sent by someone living near Kladno, Czech Republic, a distance of 5,812 miles from me.  I have a traveling one that I’ve been stressing about; it’s been out on its way to the U.K. for 38 days right now.  I wonder whether the sender of the card I received today has been wondering about its status, or if she finds that’s been the norm for the cards she sends.  She has a chihuahua named Marshmallow, if that is any possible clue as to the answer.

She tells me this recipe is for dill sauce.  I put the recipe’s title through Google Translate, and it told me the language was Hindi.  After I set it straight–only then–it confirmed this is indeed a recipe for dill sauce.

The Buenos Aires postcard came from a swap-botter somewhere near Phoenix, Arizona.  She writes:

“Have you ever been to Argentina?  I went last summer and loved it!  We also got to go to the beach in Uruguay.  What’s your favorite place you’ve traveled to?”

Stamps & postmarks:



Pup at the Gate: Sent to China & Indonesia

Two more postcards off overseas:Postcard449

Chongqing, China is the destination for the gate of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, the location of a favorite restaurant of mine (as I wrote in yesteday’s post).  I love the foggy view!  The card goes out in a Postcrossing Forum “China Meets the World” tag trade.

The other card goes out in a private trade with a Postcrosser in Bekasi, Indonesia who is a dog lover.  Since I only have cards with drawings of dogs rather than photos, I had asked her if she even wanted that.  She replied, “yes all kinds of dog postcards, even it’s made of dog food/biscuit box, really.”  This, I can do!

By the way, if you are planning on dining at the restaurant inside the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, your pup will have to stay in the car (so pick a cool day–not Tuesday, the restaurant is closed on Tuesdays–and try to find a shady spot to park).

Stamps, stamps, & washi tape:



The City of YUM: Sent to Romania & the U.S.

Two cards going out in a swap-bot: “I’ve been here” trade:


This pair is headed for Daytona Beach, Florida; and Rădăuți, Romania.  Yes, I have been to this place, the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas–about 5 times in the space of just over a year, I think!  I was not looking for Ten Thousand Buddhas, but for one great Chinese vegetarian restaurant, and I found it!

This “city” is located on the edge of Ukiah, California, on the site of a former state hospital.  I guess it was a creepy, abandoned place for years prior to its current incarnation; I have a friend who grew up not far from here, and though he also loves Chinese vegetarian restaurants, he has yet to get up the nerve to enter this place that used to spook the locals!

Ukiah is about a two-and-a-half-hour drive north of me, and there’s not much else up in the region, so yes, I did indeed go just for the restaurant: Jyun Kang Vegetarian Restaurant.  And it’s soooo goood!  I especially recommend the “Seaweed Roll, Cucumber, and Carrot with Thai Style Tom Yam Sauce.” Or any of their fried bits, really; healthy in one way doesn’t need to mean healthy in every way. BTW, I don’t know if other people visit Ukiah only for Jyun Kang, but I do know that upon entering the City compound (you drive right under that gate on the top postcard), you stop at the visitor center to sign in (and perhaps buy some postcards?)–and I noticed once in the guest book that the people signing in right before me, also for the restaurant, live in the same city as me!

Stamps, stamps, & washi tape:


It’ll Nearly be Like a Picture Print by Currier & Ives: Received from Netherlands, Taiwan, & the U.S.


The picture print by Currier & Ives comes from Dallas, Texas, in a swap-bot “I wish I was WHERE?” trade.  The sender answers the question this way:

“I live in Texas and very seldom see snow, so this is where I would like to be.  I would like to spend 2 weeks enjoying the snow, sleigh rides, long walks and sitting in front of the fireplace relaxing.  Quite a difference from the 70s we are experiencing now.”

In the 70s? I guess Texas is where I would rather be right now!

From new New Taipei, Taiwan comes the pastoral scene, labeled as being from Cingjing Farm.  The sender writes:

“I’m a student who majored in English.  Traveling around the world is one of my dreams.  Taiwan is a beautiful island.  There are many delicious snacks and food in Taiwan.  Have you ever tried some food in night market?  You should have a try next time you visit Taiwan.”

Finally, there is the seal, my favorite of the three cards.  It came to me from a Postcrosser in De Bilt, Netherlands, who tells me:

“Love spending summer vacations in Great Britain, watching British murder mysteries, cooking, photography, shopping for nice cards for Postcrossing.  Every now & then I select some of my best photos & order postcards to be printed professionally of those photos for Postcrossing.  Do you do so too?

The answer, by the way, to the two questions posed by the last two correspondents, is “yes.”

Stamps, etc.:


If I Could Eat a Postcard: Received from China & Malaysia

I received a couple of REALLY tasty postcards this week:



A Postcrosser in Xiamen, Fujian, China sent me that Tian Jin crepe, the Jian Bing Guo Zi.  She wrote the postcard while enjoying some time in Xiamen Botanical Garden!  She tells me the park offers “really fresh air & beautiful views.”  I enjoy visiting botanical gardens when I travel, so I need to put Xiamen & its garden on the list.

Now about that jian bing guo zi: the sight of that made me need to find where I could get some, as soon as possible, close to home!  The very next day I was in Oakland’s Chinatown, at Tian Jin Dumplings, AKA “the dumpling window,” as it is not a walk-in restaurant, but merely a window along the street, which you might miss if you walk too briskly & are not paying attention.  I’ve been here previously, for the dumplings & bao, but this time it was all about the jian bing.  Here it is:

2016-02-05 11.58.39

I hear there is a bubble tea place in my own city that counts this dish among its offerings–we’ll see about that, at some point.

As for that card full of delicious fruit, it comes to me from Kota Kinabulu, Malaysia.  This was the first card sent out by a brand-new Postcrosser, and she listed every single fruit on the card!  She also tells me:

“My favorite fruit would be durian though it’s famous for its aroma/stench, haha.  Recently I ate some by the roadside fruit stall and boy it was good!”

Durians are the spiky things in the middle of the photo; two are complete, one is open, showing its tender insides.  Durian is known as “the king of fruits!”  Another saying for the fruit is “smells like hell, tastes like heaven!” And there are many places that do not allow the stuff on public transport (Singapore, for one).  It’s really tasty fresh, but just wait for that first burp…

Stamps, postmark, sticker, sketch: I like them all!  Can’t stop poking that puffy panda…


“What the…?!?”: Sent to Seattle

No Postcrossing/swap-bot action here: this is a great-big envelope I sent off to a friend!

The occasion is the Lunar New Year–and I did send a few specially-purchased Year of the Monkey goods–but as usual in the packets of madness I send out to friends, the “good stuff” is surrounded by a wealth of random bits I have accumulated for the purpose of amusement: stickers, trading cards, stuff that surfaces in fits of decluttering…all sorts of odd bits & ridiculousness.

The collage on the right is the back of the big envelope.  On the front I have stamped the little Snoopy scene you see on the left.  This uses all of the stamps I received in the “Snoopy Madness” order I shared recently in this space.  I’ve been using the mailbox stamp in my postcards going out this week, but this is the first time I have used any of the others in the 4-stamp set.

I always look forward to hearing my friends’ reactions after they’ve received my li’l mail surprise packages.  Not all people have the personality or intelligence to know how to react to this kind of fun, but this particular friend always reports that his office mates (ohh, yehhh, I send them to his office) are always amused & fascinated whenever these periodic mail days come.

2016-02-05 17.23.00a

Do you create wacky packages of your own, to add a little lunacy to the days of the people in your life?  Tell me about it!