Bringing in the Recycling: Received from Malaysia, South Africa, and the United States

Some very special, unique postcards just in–hewn from food packaging of one kind or another.


These are presented in exact proportion to one another. The two postcards to the right are actual postcard-size. What I am saying is, that doggie card is HUGE. Spanning my hand wide along it, it reaches vertically from the tip of my middle finger, on down, well past my wrist bone. Horizontally, my thumb & pinkie do stretch beyond the edges, but I am unable to grasp the card without bending it. Huge, I say.

Did I mention that the card cut from the box of dog biscuits is huge?  Well, it is.  It was sent to me as part of one of my favorite swap-bot trades, the Chunk O Cardboard swap.  It arrived from Brakpan, South Africa–becoming not just my first card from that country, but also my very first from the entire African continent!  Wikipedia tells me that Brakpan is a gold & uranium mining town in the province of Gauteng, and that…

The name Brakpan was first used by the British in the 1880s because of a non-perennial lake that would annually dry to become a “brackish pan”.

Insert joke about California swimming pools here.

The “chonju Redginseng Tonis” card was sent to me from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, part of a food package postcard tag in the Postcrossing Forum.  The sender helpfully tells me,

“this is red ginseng tonis from Korea, it was bought by my mum from Dodam thermal massage bed company.  They have their branch in Malaysia though.”

Massage bed–so that’s what that other thing on the box is!  Couldn’t tell if it was some kind of odd remote control, or what!  Doesn’t look too relaxing, but maybe the ingestion of ginseng is what makes that happen for a person…

The wake-up workout comes to me from somewhere in the Jacksonville, Florida area, another swap-bot chunk o cardboard.  “Do you sudoku?,” asks the sender, “I can’t even spell it.”  In my thank-you message, I let her know that I used to sudoku quite a lot.  I did this because I’d heard it’s good for the brain, but then I finally stopped when I realized it was curtailing my reading time.

Stamps!  Some really nice ones, and if you’ll notice, there is a bird representing each of the three countries.


Sent to India, Malaysia, and the United States

More swap-bot “Chunk of Cardboard” trading.  Did a little collage work this time!


Some super-lucky swap-botters out there.

All that produce is on its way to Puchong, Malaysia.  It’s a facial-tissue box backdrop, decorated with bits of packaging that once contained (as you can see) tangerines, avocadoes, and spinach.  Those are all things I enjoy eating, and Malaysia is a place I would love to go & eat, so what a great pairing.  Also, the trader living there said she really likes yellow & green, so that made this a good choice.  You may not be able to see the yellow, but trust me: it is in the green.

On the topic of places I would like to go and do some eating: India!  At long last, I have my first postcard match with India!  The li’l superhero card will go to Kanpur, India: the 5th largest city in India by land area and 10th most populous urban agglomeration (so says Wikipedia). We have here a collage of a monster from a candy/toy box, and a superhero from junk mail, facing off on a tissue box background.  The recipient devotes a lot of space on her profile to decrying what is apparently an extremely unreliable postal system, so I sure hope this little piece of art makes it to her.  She is also an absolutely avid reader: as much space as she devotes to distress over the mail delivery, and receiving a low rating on swap-bot, she devotes far more to the books she reads: genres, authors, and titles.  Makes me want to slam the laptop closed & go pick up the book I am reading!

Finally, the simple chunk of silly-face-printed tissue box goes to Palm Coast, Florida, to a person who has just received a postcard from me in a “food packaging” card exchange. It’s good match for the cookie package I sent her before, because the tissues can be used to wipe up the crumbs.

Sent to Canada, Netherlands, and the United States

Three going out, in a trio of swap-bot trades…


Three very lucky people out there in this world…

Pochacco & Friends are on their way to IJmuiden, Netherlands.  This card & the next one go out in a swap-bot “postcard fun” trade.  Directions were pretty specific; they read in part:

“When sending postcards I love to make the backs as extra special as the fronts. In this swap you will send your partner a postcard. This is profile based so please look at your partners profile ! If you haven’t got a wish list or a list of things you like then please make a small one that your partner can use as a guide. It doesn’t specifically have to be a postcard wish list.  On the back you must have the following: The Swap Title. Your Swap ID. 2 or more postage stamps. 1 or more stickers and 1 small strip of Washi Tape or Deco Tape. These can be displayed anywhere you like. Please also add a small note about yourself where you are from and what your likes are.”

–and, ohhh, heck.  I see I am in violation.  I counted denominations to get the stamp combo right:


$1.15 + washi tape. Or as I call it, “tape.”

–but I forgot stickers!  Wait, I DID put a sticker on the next card, because it fit the theme, but the first card just has a pair of ink-stamped images!  AND, my notes–while 14-to-16-lines long–aren’t precisely “about yourself where you are from and what your likes are.” Although they ARE about me & things that I’ve done & things that have happened to me.  WILL I GET GRADED DOWN FOR INATTENTION TO PRECISE FORMATICS?

Breathe, I gotta breathe.

Anyhow, Netherlands.  I saw the recipient liked illustrated cards, so I reached toward my “Animal Box” of 100 illustrated postcards, selected a very nice one–and then saw that the recipient does not like animal potcards. But she does like Sanrio (but not Disney), and I did have this Pochacco! Whew!

You can see that today has been a roller-coaster of emotions for me.

Snoopy & Woodstock are destined for Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, to a swapper who listed Snoopy & Woodstock among her many likes.  I purchased this at the Charlie Brown Cafe in Bangkok, Thailand, and told her about that experience.

Finally, it’s goodbye to Hello Panda, who is en route to Palm Coast, Florida.  That’s part of a swap-bot food package postcard trade, and as I recently mentioned, I think these Hello Panda boxes are a natural for turning into postcards.

Received from Ukraine & the United States

Another mix of swap-bot & Postcrossing…


The Andy Warhol image came to me from Jacksonville, Florida via swap-bot, in a “read in January” trade.  The sender read a book by Mary E. Pearson called The Kiss of Deception.  As she describes the story:

“17-year-old Princess Lia runs away to escape an arranged marriage to a man she’s never met.  Soon after, 2 young men arrive at the village she’s at–she doesn’t know that one is the prince and one is an assassin sent to kill her. You get all 3 points of view but you don’t find out until the end who is who (I guessed right–YAY!).  I can’t wait until July for the next book in the series.”

The bit of box comes from Cary, North Carolina, in a swap-bot trade of food packaging turned into postcards.  I haven’t eaten any Snackwell’s in about a decade and a half or more (as I recall, it was, uhm, “un-good”), but my enthusiastic correspondent says, “I do enjoy snacking on these cookies.  I love the popcorn as well.  Check them out.”

While we are on the topic of packaged foods I’ve tried that make me cranky, add Campbell’s Soup to the list.  Burf.

You know what is awesome?  That card on the right.  I’m showing the back as well as the front, as that huge layout of colorful stamps turns it into two postcards in one!  The blocks of solid color are privacy panels.  This card came my way from Vinnitsya, Ukraine via Postcrossing, and my only problem with the stamp mural is that it leaves little room for a message!  My fellow Postcrosser shrinks her handwriting up tight, though, and tells me, “my hobbies are reading, cooking, and traveling, especially the mountains.”

Received from Indonesia, Netherlands, Spain, and the United States

Four in a day…all are Postcrossing, but for the bit of packaging you see, which is swap-bot.


On my favorite card of the batch, those beautiful foods came to me from Semarang, Indonesia, marking my very first card from that country.  The sender tells me some tales of the local foods:

“Many foods here are influenced by the Chinese who came here around the 15th or 16th Century.  Lumpia…is a kind of spring roll with minced bamboo shoot as its filling…a husband and wife who invented lumpia once were rivals who sold their typical lumpia.  The husband was Chinese, while the wife was local Javanese.  People here love to eat quail eggs.  It’s so delicious, though it has 3640 mg of cholesterol.”

Moving from delicious foods on to coffee & tea, that Folger’s panel, another swap-bot “chunk of cardboard” acquisition, came my way from Florida.  The sender tells me, “I love a good cup of coffee in the morning, nothing gets me smiling better.”

Back to Postcrossing, and some tea & sweets to go with that coffee, comes that note card from Didam, Netherlands. The sender made use of all the extra writing surface by telling me a lot about herself, such as the fact she bakes almost every week, and she shares her favorite quote(no idea whose it is):

“Kindness makes you the most beautiful person in the world, no matter what you look like.”

Finally, from A Coruña, Spain, comes the pendant.  Knowing I’m a lover of the coast, the sender tells me, “I love beaches.  In Coruña, there are a lot of beaches and I like all of them.  In summer I’ll go to all of them because they are so special.  In winter, I usually go to walk on the beach.”



I really like the stamp from Indonesia. I wish I were there right now, enjoying these beautiful flowers in person!

Sent to Finland, Japan, and the United States

A swap-bot, and a couple of Postcrossing…


Swap-bot comes first, with a “not my country” trade. I got the tuk-tuk card in Thailand, and now am sending it to a trader in Palm Coast, Florida.  She says she is fascinated by peeling layers of paint, but not so much by books that one might categorize as “trashy romance and cheap poorly-written thriller garbage or religious.”  I can tell you right now that if you tried to read any of that while riding a tuk-tuk, it might be near impossible!  Plus, you would be missing out on the sights.

The other two cards go out on Postcrossing draws.  That poetry book card goes to Helsinki, Finland, to a user whose profile comes in at a sparse 29 words, saying almost nothing more than she likes pugs, and knitting, and reading poetry.  Oh, good–have this card!

The California coast goes to Hadano, Japan, to a  “Kazakhstani” student studying there.  She said she likes cards with a “view of your country,” and so…

Sent to: Canada, England, and U.S.A.

NINE cards out in one day!  Various swap-bot trades: tourist postcard, non-touristy postcard, favorite animals, and something that starts with an F (that’s the football to the head in the top row).


Took a little day trip down the coast last week & finally picked up some decent touristy postcards.

Here’s the list of destinations for these cards:

Prince George, British Columbia, Canada

Ryton, Tyne and Wear, England

–and all in the U.S.:

Woodville, Alabama

Clovis, California

Brandon, Florida

Clermont, Florida

Fall River, Massachusetts

Round Hill, Virginia

Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Sent to: Groningen, Netherlands; Singapore; Deltona, Florida; and Frenchtown, New Jersey

First off: Postcrossing news.  A card I sent to Qingdao, China, has been received!  It took 24 days to travel 5,977 miles.  Now, I get to send out a new card–to Groningen, Netherlands!

2014-09-11 07.32.17c

Yes, this card has appeared on this blog before.  The fact there are 500 of them means it is also likely it will appear again. In fact, I am also sending one out, not via Postcrossing or swap-bot, to a friend in Singapore.

To Deltona, Florida, part of an “upcycled postcard” swap-bot trade:


Nancy here has walked down the The Snail Mail path before, too.

Also for the swap-bot “upcycled” trade, this masterpiece goes to Frenchtown, New Jersey.


Hmm, perhaps, I should have saved that one for an international art collector…

Sent to Clermont, Florida

Clermont is home to the 226-foot-tall Florida Citrus Tower — which these days overlooks suburbia, and looks nothing like citrus.

Another card going out on a swap-bot call for “sender’s choice.”


The recipient mentioned she likes “The Wizard of Oz,” so here we go. She’s also a fan of Marvel Comics, but that has nothing to do with this, as I would hope you can tell.