Animal & Food Edition: Received from China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, & the U.S.

I love these two little seals! They came to me from Germany via Postcrossing Forum, and the sender writes:

“I saw some cards like this at your favorites so I decide to send you this one. The word ‘wasserratten’ means ‘water rats,’ we also call people who loves to swim this way.”

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The meerkats came from a sender in Italy who seems to have confused them for another animal:

“A few years ago, I visited, together with some friends, a zoo safari not far from my home. The first animal I saw was a lemur, standing on the top of his lair, who watched us curious.”

The wonderful pandas come from Fuzhou, China, but it’s food the sender has in mind:

“In Fuzhou, my favorite snack is called meat yan. Unlike other kinds of wontons, the wrapper of it is made of minced meat and sweet potato flour. I tastes so good that you should try it some day!”

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This offers the perfect transition into the food postcard version of my post. The sweet postcard below if from my friend Cindi in Hawaii, and it shows hula pie. Even better is the Snoopily-decorated back of the card, which appears toward the bottom of this post.

The table laden with Indian delicacies comes from Chennai, India, via Postcard United. The sender writes:

Greetings from Chennai, one of the major cities in India. Here we speak Tamil, one of the longest surviving languages in the world. I am sending you a card that features some of the famous food in India.

Don’t miss the beautiful, huge stamp that was on the back of this card, featuring a scene from the Ramayana!

Postcard426That mapo tofu sung to me so loudly that I went out & ordered it one night, and ate a homemade version the next! It came to me from Japan via a Postcrossing Forum food package postcard tag. The sender writes:

“This is a package of ‘mapo tofu.’ Do you know it? Its taste is spicy and hot. I like it.”

Next comes the soup, and it’s from Hong Kong:

“Hope you like my own postcard. Noodle soup is Asian staple food.”

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The last postcard came to me from Germany from the regular Postcrossing, and the sender tells me:

“I’m sending you this card depicting the specialty of my region: Schäufele. It’s the shoulder part of the pork and the meat on the bone. Has to be very tender but it has a crispy crust. Yum!”

Okay, stamp time! In the first row, don’t miss Hong Kong’s Kitchenware Street! I’ll have to check it out next time I am there.

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Deadly Exclamation Point Leaks: Sent to China, Finland, India, & Taiwan

All but one of today’s cards go out in Postcrossing Forum tag trades.  Five lucky people we’ll be touching upon today:

The battling elephant seals go to an animal lover in Udupi, Karnataka, India who says she loves “anything that is unique!!!!” Whoa!  Well, this card is unique, because as far as I know, it is sold only in a single location, a restaurant in San Simeon, California–this being because the shot was taken by the restaurant’s owner.  After having sorta recently eaten and shopped for postcards at that establishment, I can say I will definitely return for more postcards.

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Kitty in pearls head to Shenzhen, Guangdong, China, to a university student majoring in accounting who said she likes “anything related to cats!!!!!!!”  Whoa!

Snoopy would have been a good choice for President.  He’s headed for some international diplomacy in New Taipei City, Taiwan, where the idea of Postcrossing excites her, because she’s “never had a conversation with any foreigner before, I feel really excited and I look forward to it.”

SpongeBob!  That’s the one Postcard United send this time, and it is somewhere on its way to a junior high student in Fuzhou, Fujian, China who says she likes SpongeBob.  She says she is “very happy to fall in love with a postcard, it makes me feel a lot of warmth.”

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Finally–and back to Postcrossing Forum–there’s Doctor Lucy.  The forum’s Snoopy/Peanuts tag goes for months at a time without a hit, likely due in large part to the dearth of Peanuts postcards available in the U.S., as I often moan about in this space.  Why can’t I just walk into my local Hallmark stores & pick up stacks of Peanuts postcards?  Because they don’t exist!  Okay, I’ve got to stop this.  Lucy goes off to Riihikoski, Finland, to the person who a couple of months ago tagged me in the same thread, & sent me the Sally Brown card I’ve displayed here previously.

Okay, time for a look at the stamps, stamps, stickers, & washi tape…

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Talk of Food, with a Bunch of Other Stuff In & Around: Received from Canada, China, Germany, Netherlands, Russia, & Ukraine

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Of course, my favorite card this time around is the one at top left, loaded down with dim sum.  Arriving the day after I had been out for a huge dim sum feast…

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…this made me smile even wider!  It came to me from Fuzhou, China in a Postcrossing Forum tag trade, and the sender had seen the card in my favorites.

“This card shows some popular dishes.  I like them too.  🙂  I’m glad to send this card to you.  My summer holiday was finish.  I began to work.  The mid-autumn festival will be coming. We eat mooncakes on the day.  I like mooncakes.”

I made mooncakes for the Mid-Autumn Festival this year:

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The colorful card at top right, full of figs & stuff is a Postcrossing arrival from Sevastopol, Crimea, Ukraine.  The sender tells me:

“This postcard depicts (Crimea’s) sights and culture…and FOOD.  We have a lot of fruits, fish and vegetables and our cuisine is based on this ingredients.  It’s very tasty as the Russian cuisine and I strongly recommend you to visit my country, my city, my region at least because of its food.  If you’re interested, I’ll give you some recipes.”

The cartoon kid came to me from Mannheim, Germany, and the sender writes:

“I’m working as a librarian at the university.  My 15 years old nephew is a fan of Naruto and he gave me this card for you.  OK, it’s an ad card…but we thought you might like it.  My hometown is Mannheim where Carl Benz invented the automobile in the years 1885/1886.  The stamp is a fairy tale stamp of the story about Hansel and Gretel.  Have a nice mail day!”

You can see Hansel & Gretel down at the bottom of this post.

The ship on a postcard is from a Postcrosser in St. Petersburg, Russia, who tells me:

“I love reading and my favorite book is ‘The Master and Margarita.’ And also for cuisine, I prefer Georgia’s.  It’s really amazing!  I like spicy meat and I’m fond of their sweets, too!”

Then we come to two fish postcards, joined into a single notecard with washi tape.  The envelope crafted for this is remarkable–you can also see it down below (complete with the bite taken out of it somewhere along the snail mail pipeline).  This came to me from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada as the result of a result of a swap-bot swap: the swap I shared that was so special I felt the need to mail something off in return. This time, she writes (in part):

“Thanks very much for responding to the swap I had sent you.  It was an even happier snail mail day because it involved a Smurfette envie, cool stamps, a retro postcard, and you left very little white space on the postcards–these are my favorite kinds to receive! 🙂

The sea creature rubber stamps you asked about–they are a set from a company called DJECO.  My memory is kind of dismal these days, but I think I got them in the kids’ section at the Vancouver Art Gallery giftshop.  I did check Amazon, but they didn’t have this particular set.  I found them a few years ago, so don’t know how available they are.

You know of ROBOCON!!! It was not until I looked him up as an adult, that I realized he was an actual character!  I though he was just/or could have been a figment of my childhood imagination.  I can’t tell you why I so loved this robot when I was a kid.  Still do, I guess!  

I’m off to Befordshire and will start the new Springsteen book.  Hope I don’t fall asleep b/c it’s heavy and it’ll hurt when it falls on my face.  :I  “

Boy, can I relate to that last bit, about falling asleep while reading in bed(‘fordshire’).

Finally, from a Postcrosser in Groningen, Netherlands, I received that postcard of tapas.  The sender had put this in an envelope, and she wrote:

“If you ‘love’ food, I ‘have’ to send this card to you.  Sorry for the envelope, the sorthing machines mark black stripes on the front of the card.”

I do need to say at this point that if someone were to invite me out for tapas, I would be hoping to go to the tapas place not far from my home.

Okay, this was a rather long meeting.  Let’s end it all now, with a look at the stamps, postmarks, envelope & stuff.

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A 227-Day Borscht! Received from China, France, Russia, Sweden, & Taiwan

I’ve received my first Postcrossing card from Sweden–and it’s meerkats!  I love those li’l guys.  The card’s sender lives in Stocka, Sweden, and she writes:

“One of your favorite cards had a suricate, so I hope you like this card too! 🙂  I’m 66, retired, and living with my husband at the Swedish eastcoast (+-300 km N of Stockholm).  We live in a small village at the seaside and enjoy very much the beautiful nature and the quietness.  🙂 “

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The mountainous scene is from Yangzhou, China, thanks to a Postcrossing Forum trade. The sender tells me about the art:

“This series of postcard is about Chinese ancient poems and paintings.  And this one mostly expresses flash of time, and homesickness.”

Next comes another Postcrossing Forum card from the same country: the map watercolor came from a sender in Fuzhou, China, who told me a bit about herself:

“I like to read too.  I like detective novels and of course, manga.  XD  I enjoy my summer holidays now.”

Aren’t those basset hounds great?  It’s a regular Postcrossing receipt from an elementary school science teacher in Taichung, Taiwan, who writes about the food stamps you’ll see below:

“The stamps show the delicious Taiwanese street food: Ba-wan, stinky tofu, and sugar apple.”

The aubergine borshch is another Postcrossing card, and it came to me from Kazan, Russia, and, WHOA!  IT TOOK 227 DAYS TO GET TO ME!  Postcrossing card assignments expire after 60 days, clearing the slot so the sender can mail off another card.  If another, uh, 138 days had passed, I wouldn’t have been able to register it!  Where do you suppose the card was, that whole time?  Nothing revolutionary in the message, just a 16-year-old writing that she hopes I will like her traditional cuisine.  I don’t know if I’ve had this exact soup, but there is a restaurant near me that serves a tasty Hong Kong-style borscht!

Finally, the toon card, another regular Postcrossing incoming, is from Paris, France (well, in her profile, the sender says, “I live in Paris, but not in Paris”).  The sender tells me she purchased the card “when I was in the UK at the beach.”

Stamps, postmarks, & stuff: I love the delicious top line of stamps here:postcard737

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A Beautiful Handful: Received from Canada, China, Taiwan, and the United States

Love this batch!  Working clockwise-ish from the top left:

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The “Thirsty Beaver” seems to have come from a beer box, and is part of a swap-bot “chunk-o-cardboard” trade–one of my favorites!  The sender, from somewhere near Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, tells me my toy photography inspired her to take a toy out on the beach for a photo shoot.  I love that!

The dessert dumplings came to me as part of a Postcrossing Forum trade called “anime-wishlist tag,” in which one person is to send an anime card, the next something from the previous poster’s wish list, etc.  My wish list included Asian foods, and so here we are.  It came to me from Fuzhou, China, and the sender tells me:

“This is yuanxiao 元宵.  We eat them in the Lantern Festival 元宵节.  It’s the special food for the festival…I like Chinese food, especially dumplings 饺子 and noodles 面条.  How about you?”

Oh, yes!

Those beautiful spotted jellies, on a card from the Monterey Bay Aquarium, were sent to me from Davis, California.  This was for a swap-bot “what are you reading” trade, and she said she is reading The Goldfinch for book club this month, and she is not far enough in yet to be grabbed by it. Now, the book won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2014, but a prize sticker on a book is by absolutely no means any guarantee that a person is going to find it enjoyable.  There are many prize-winners I just love, but I’ve got to say that this blurb:

The Goldfinch is a mesmerizing, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

…makes my eyes roll so hard that my head sounds like a billiard room!

The card’s sender also tells me that she is “listening to Balducci’s Last Man Standing–THAT grabs you!

I love that “Snoopy and his friends” card, which came to me from Taoyuan City, Taiwan, thanks to a Postcrossing Forum “Snoopy/Peanuts” tag.  Peanuts cards are tough to get here in the U.S.; in fact the only ones I have to send–one of which I used to send out in this tag trade–I bought in Bangkok, Thailand at the Charlie Brown Cafe!  And I would be happy to go there & buy some more. Don’t know why there are not postcards to be found generally here, but it does seem that the bigger market for an expanded array of Peanuts goods is outside the U.S.

Lastly, there is that beautiful scenery from Gulangyu Islet in China’s Fujian province.  Be sure to make the image large so that you may see what’s going on.  It’ probably not good that a hole seems to have been blasted through that mountain–but I do think I’d enjoy taking that sky ride on through! This card came to me through a regular Postcrossing draw, from a sender in “Tianjin, a beautiful city in China.”

Stamps!

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