The Traveler, the Cook, and the Sailor: Received from Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, & the U.S.

This time:

  • Snoopy!
  • Disney!
  • “Word lovers” with nothing to say!
  • Falling apart in the post!

 

Let’s start with a great pair of cards I actually got to choose, thanks to Postcrossing Forum offer tags.  This Peanuts postcard, with Patty scratching Snoopy’s chin, came from Japan, and the sender wrote, “I hope you will enjoy this card!”  Well, yes… I did ask for it…

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The sender in Hong Kong tells me about her local Disneyland:

“(It’s) the smallest one in the world, but it’s still popular, especially with Chinese tourists.  Every day the park is crowded with tourists.  😦 and I am not interested in it.”

Ha, when I spent a mere 3 nights in HK a few years back (not nearly enough time to properly see the city), I tried like crazy to avoid Disneyland–but everywhere I turned, there was another image or large advertising display for the place.  I finally gave in, & made a whirlwind early-morning trip, before meeting a friend for a dim sum lunch.  Fortunately, my mid-week, early-morning trip yielded a very uncrowded park, with no memorable waits for any of the rides I chose.  I had a great time!

Speaking of tourist zones, look at this cool 3-D card my pen pal in Tokyo, Japan sent to me when she visited Tokyo Tower!  The fact that they had a special mailbox & postmark tells me that Japan is very much more of a postcard-writing-and-treasuring culture than is the U.S.  Now I did, on a recent road trip, see a general store in a little community that had its own postcards, which it would mail for you for free, should you fill one out to someone & drop it in their basket.  I didn’t take advantage of the offer, as I don’t carry an address book on me.  Guess I could have looked up addresses on my phone email app–but I don’t know how many Gs I was getting in that remote area!

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The soup comes via a Postcrossing Forum food tag from a sender in Yokohama, Japan, who tells me about the photo on her card:

“This picture of Japanese local cuisine ‘Sanpei-jiru.’  It’s Japanese sake less soup with chopped salmon and vegetables.  It’s very good.”

A flying whale from Albany, New York, thanks for a Postcrossing Forum “marine life & sea creature” tag.  I see I made a note on the card quoting a line from this Postcrosser’s profile: “I love words.”  Now, why did I want to remember that?  Oh, I see now: the card was mostly blank space on the back, with the only message being “hope you like this card!  I thought it was pretty cool. :)”

So, that happened.

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The rug-looking card seems to be a piece of cardboard covered in gift wrap.  I’d have guessed contact paper, but this thing arrived in my mailbox flapping apart, attached only at one end.  This has been a bit of a theme recently. This one came to me from Blitar, Indonesia, thanks to Postcrossing.  The sender tells me I am her first match–she just joined the night before!  She also wrote:

“I am 23 years old, living in a small city in East Java province, called Blitar.  I love reading too!  My favourite is about self development, business/marketing and also recipe book because I’m a chef… I am a food consultant here, my clients are spread in Palembang, Jakarta, Surabaya, etc… so I live nomaden sometimes… Hahaha.  I love traveling too!  My fave Asia destinations are Thailand and Hong Kong!  The food is superb!  I hope someday I can go to USA!!!  That’s my dream destination.”

Finally, there’s the St. Petersburg card, another Postcrossing draw, this time from a 16-year-old girl in Checkhov, Russia, who wrote that she’d just returned from Camp Artek, where she was in the sea squad, and had a great time learning knots, semaphore, and much more.

Okay, enough for now!  Here come the stamps, stickers, & stuff.  See anything you like?

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Has Russia Hacked Postcrossing/-cardunited? Sent toGermany, Hong Kong, Japan, Russia, Taiwan, & the U.S.

This time:

  • A conspiracy?
  • A Snoopy treasure trove discovered, and cast far & wide
  • Other stuff
  • Tons of stamps & stickers

Let’s start with Good Ol’ Snoopy Brown.  I’ve mentioned many times in this space the lack of Snoopy/Peanuts cards here in the U.S.  Despite being the birthplace of the comic strip, and although Peanuts greeting cards seem to be sold absolutely everywhere (even in supermarkets), the postcards are just not found unless you go to the source: the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa.

That being the case, I was thrilled to find a book of 1970’s-era Snoopy postcards on sale online!

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Several have already been dispatched, including to Peanuts-loving pen-pals of mine in Hawaii, Tokyo, & England (I know I didn’t write that trio out as an equal set, yes).  Those cards (and one to Taoyuan, Taiwan, for a Postcrossing Forum tag) went out as postcards should, with a note & a stamp on the back, & dropped into a mailbox.  The next one here went out to a Postcrossing Forum regular in Finland who says that she gives Snoopy postcards to a friend, so she’d like hers in an envelope.  Okay, fine–I made an envelope:

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She also likes to collect stamps, so since I was already throwing stuff into an envelope, I added some stamps from my incoming mail.

The foggy view of Golden Gate Bridge was chosen by someone in Berlin, Germany, in a Postcrossing Forum “show the card you offer” tag.  I’m glad I had something she liked.

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To Berlin & St. Petersburg

Okay, let’s get into the Russia hack scandal story I’ve just made up (or unearthed inadvertently, who knows).  I have fallen way behind on “official” cards traveling out via Postcrossing Forum & Postcard United: between the two sites, I had only 1 card traveling (I think I can have around 30 at this point if I chose to).  Yes, I’m sending a lot of cards out, but it’s mainly via Postcrossing Forum, which offers so many different options that I’ve just found it the more fun way to go.  The problem I have with the main focus of the two sites is that Postcrossing Forum seems to send me constantly to just the same 3-4 countries, and Postcard United’s algorithm is so rough that there are repeat encounters with the same people, and I’m being paired within my own country.

Anyhow, I decided to send some cards out again via the two sites, so started asking to be assigned addresses:

Click 1–Postcrossing: Saint Petersburg, RUSSIA.  Of course.  Decided to try my luck next at the other site.

Click 2–Postcard United: Moscow, RUSSIA.  Why, I oughta…

Click 3–Postcard United: Krasnodar, RUSSIA.  What?!?  I claim shenanigans.  I’m moving back to the other site.

Click 4–Postcrossing: Alkmaar, Netherlands.  Fine.  I then quit while I was ahead.  We’ll see when I click on those “send a postcard” buttons again.  This is supposed to be relaxing.

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A sweetened pickle to the Netherlands, and the rest to Russia.

Moving on from the Eastern European drama… the pair of cards pictured next went off to China, in Postcrossing Forum tags.  The aerial view of Hearst Castle (another card I replenished during my recent postcard-gathering road trip) is headed toward a food safety major in Beijing, who expressed his wishes for anything local to the sender: “local buildings…anything local is welcome!”  If by local, he meant anything in the same state, this place 3 hours or so away from me is local!

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The pancakes, which I received recently from a Postcard Uniter, go to Heifei, Anhui, China, in a food postcard trade.  The recipient is a chemistry student who says he loves travel, and receiving food postcards.

Finally, this multi-zoned California map card (part of my recent haul) went off to Hong Kong, to someone hoping for map cards. I told her that within just a couple of months, I will have traveled to every segment on the left sided of the card within this calendar year.  I do love coastal trips!

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Now a look at stamps, stickers, washi tape, & stuff–do you have any favorites down here? Behold the new USPS stamp release, Delicioso, which “celebrates the influence of Central and South American, Mexican, and Caribbean foods and flavors on American cuisine.”  And I always love the shorebird & sea shell postcard stamp sets.

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Infinite Crisis: Received from Japan, Russia, South Korea, Taiwan, & the U.S.

This time:

  • How do you slap a new backing on a received card (catch & release)?
  • Postcrossers not living in the country Postcrossing think they live in
  • An “inner-national” piece of mail via Postcard United
  • Not covered at all down below, but I recieved two pieces of mail (one a week for the past two weeks) for that house that is not on my street
  • And other stuff

Let’s do this.

Hey, look at this travel poster-themed card from Cindi in Hawaii!  She tells me the art is by Nick Kuchar, who I see has been doing some good work over there for a little while now.

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Some more beautiful art now, this one an original piece made for me by a swap-botter in Pennsylvania for a “Earth Day Upcycle Postcard Swap.”  She really got into the theme!  She tells me:

“I’ve always loved this holiday.  I was president of my school’s ecology club, and now I spend a lot of time hiking and camping in nature.  I want future generations to enjoy the same beautiful places as well.”

The line about hiking in nature reminds me of my Facebook friend who always posts a status of “taking a walk” when he is at a mall.

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Next up is Hello Kitty, who of course–as you know, if you follow the news–is not a cat.  That’s from Japan via Postcrossing Forum, and I’m not going to transcribe the message, because it’s part of the scan down at the bottom of this post.  Some fun sticker work there, too!

The big red star is a regular Postcrossing card, sent to me from Moscow, Russia by someone living there for the last 5 years. She says she was born in Belarus.  Her member registration is BY–meaning she still tells Postcrossing that she lives in Belarus, and thus officially, I received this card from Belarus.  But I didn’t.

I love that not-snowman beach scene, from a Postcard United member in Jeju Island, South Korea! She tells me the writing on the card translates to “I hope your dreams come true.  Keep it up.”

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The Mount Hood card was sent to me from the Medford, Oregon area for a swap-bot “recycled postcard” swap, in which we were to slap a new backing on a card we’d received & send it to our swap partner.  Now, when I do this, I grab a chunk of cardboard (usually from a stamp order), glue it to the back, & cut it to size. Very chunky, heavy, & inelegant.  This sender had some sort of thin white sticker printed with “POSTCARD” across the top, “Please deliver to” on the address side, and “This card handstamped by _________” on the bottom of the message side.  I can see through the sticker that there is writing underneath–but I can’t see it all that well.  I guess I should scan this side of the card so you can see exactly what I’m talking about, but it’s early in the morning as I write this portion of this entry, I’m curled up on the end of the couch with my 1st cup of coffee, and I’m feeling too lazy.  This takes up too much of my time, anyhow!  In my thank-you message to the sender, I suggested I’d like to know about the special (lightweight) backing–but now word back as of yet.  Do you think she designed it herself to print on some Avery sticker paper?

Pooh is from Taiwan, via a Postcrossing Forum tag trade.  Scroll down to enjoy a whole lot of wonderful stamps!

The two recipe cards here arrived blank, in an envelope, along with a signature written in an odd Easter card (no message, just “Happy Easter!,” a signature, & Postcard United ID).  It was sent to me from Chicago, Illinois.  What?  I thought we were only supposed to receive cards from other countries!  Consarn it.  Well, I know there are people who would like to receive these cards.  In fact, I’ve already mailed one out–but those details can wait for a future post.

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Time for stamps, stickers, washi tape, & stuff.

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I love this huge-man-in-a-little-airplane stamp from South Korea!

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It’s All About Having Something to Read When You Flip Over that Card: Received from China, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Russia, South Africa, & the U.S.

From somewhere in the U.S.: I love this Ghostbusters postcard, torn from a toy box for a swap-bot “up-cycled cardboard” trade.  I opposite-of-love the lack of a message; all the sender wrote was “I hope you enjoy my postcard!  HAVE A GREAT DAY!” This is a postcard with a story, and I wish the sender had told a bit of that.

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From Japan: Hey, those look like Bugles!  Bugles, the snack–have you had them?  I can’t remember the last time I have, but this makes me want some.  Anyhow, the card came to me via a Postcrossing Forum food package postcard tag, and the sender writes:

“This is one of my favorite snacks.  It’s made of corn.  I like its crisp texture.  You can see ‘TONGARI CORN’ at the bottom of the card.  ‘TONGARI’ means cone.  So, the name of the snack is ‘Cone Corn!’  It is simple and funny, isn’t it?! =)”

See how exceptionally easy it is to come up with something to say on a postcard created from a package?

From Russia: (from the same tag) That yellow panel from a cereal box, if you turned it over, you would see the sender wrote so much that there was almost no room to include my mailing address, which was jammed down into the lower-right corner of the card.  Here’s just a little bit of the message:

“I adore the packaging of products and my room is full of these things.  I have nowhere to put them, but I can’t throw out another box or jar.  It seems this is a disease!  This packaging is from a cereal called ‘Rye Balls.’  I bought these balls when I first went to the fair in my town last December.  They help me out when I have no time to cook breakfast.  Do you like graphic novels?  ‘Blacksad‘ by Juan Diaz Canales & Juanjo Guarnido conquered my heart.  I had to read on the internet, but at the end of 2015, it was published in Russian.  I was so glad!”

That was only about half of the message.  You know, it’s all about having something to read when you flip over that card.

From Dalview, Gauteng, South Africa: That ice cream bar looks pretty good–though I would choose one with chocolate ice cream! The sender tells me about it:

“We absolutely love the Choc Pie ice cream.  Mind you, I love any ice cream.  I even eat ice cream in the winter.”

Well, winter is THE best time to eat ice cream!  After all, it’s loaded with fat, to warm you up.

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I especially like this next set of 3 postcards.  This structure is artistic & gorgeous.  It’s from China, and the sender tells me it’s a “traditional house…but most of them are become tourist places.”

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From the Netherlands, the reading man:

“I chose this card because I liked the image of this man.  He has obviously read so much that the letters come off of the pages.  I love to read!  Mostly sci-fi and fantasy.  Terry Pratchett is one of my favorite authors.”

Terry Pratchett is wonderful!  I’m overdue to read another of his books.

Oh, look at those fierce piranhas.  The sender is in North Carolina, and tells me:

“I visited Myrtle Beach last summer.  The aquarium was unique.  My favorite part was the jellyfish section.  They changed colors.  The alligator adventure animal park was awesome, too.  We also got our picture taken with two tigers and a monkey…”

Okay, that doesn’t sound like conservation.

From Germany, pancakes.  This Postcrosser writes:

“…I love cooking, baking, and good food.  The word on the front of the card means “enjoy!’  My favorites are Spanish, Italian, and Japanese food, and of course, the German food made by my mother.”

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From Russia: the snow scene is from a brand-new Postcrosser–he tells me this is his first card!  And other than that, a great expanse of snowy-white space surrounding his bit of a message.  I hope he will learn.  It’s the folks who have been Postcrossing or bot-swapping for years, and still can’t manage a message, who make me wonder.

I love that huge fish art installation on the bottom row of the Belfast card.  This came to me from Ireland, of course, and the sender tells me this is where he spent “the holidays.”

Okay, it’s finally time to look at the stamps.  There’s a sideways stamp, from China, showing some flying cranes.  Very nice.

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“Despite What the News Have Said About Us…” Received from China, Greece, Malaysia, Netherlands, Russia, the Philippines, Singapore, and the U.S. **RANT INCLUDED!**

Let’s dive in!

Look at that cooool Totoro card!  Be sure to scroll down & see the stickers on the back, too.  A Postcrosser in Seattle, Washington sent this to me in a Postcrossing Forum tag trade.

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Right next to Totoro is a scene from Singapore’s very colorful Haji Lane.  I was able to request that card in another Postcrossing Forum tag–from the same person I’d received a similar card in this tag, a few months ago.

Then we go into the wild, sort of: Cameron Highlands, Malaysia.  The sender tells me:

“Greetings from Malaysia–a very warm country in South East Asia (avg. temperature: 30C).  Malaysia is a country with multiple cultures and religions.  Despite what the news have said about us, we still live in perfect harmony and celebrate all festival together.  I grew up in a small town call Cameron Highlands, a famous cool hill resorts which had average temperature of 16C throughout the year.  It is famous for its tea growing, vegetables farming and flower nurseries.  Now I live in the capital city–Kuala Lumpur.  But I still visit my parents back in Cameron Highlands during holidays.

Panda time: it comes from China, in another PF tag trade.

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Also from China is that colorful Shanghai skyline, sent to me by an Instagram friend who’d been noticing my postcard posts, and put out a call to his friends who would like to see postcards while he was traveling in China & Taiwan.

Oh, there’s a story behind that orca card.  And by behind it, I mean regarding the back side.

I flipped the tag over to find a taped-on block of orca info printed out from Wikipedia.  C’mon.  After that, the sender jammed in a handwritten hi-how-are-you-hope-you-enjoy-this-card-take-care, and a scrawled hieroglyph of an initial.  I know the card came from Seattle, Washington, because it was clear in the postmark (clear postmarks never being a guarantee), but I didn’t know the venue (Postcrossing Forum?  swap-bot?), or the user name.  I had to spend some time going through my inbox looking for possible senders of this card, then trying to match those possibilities with locations in their profiles.  UGH!

I wish everyone using these sites would take greater care and PLEASE neatly print the following:

  • The date (postmarks are not always clear–or present)
  • Trade venue (Postcrossing Forum?  swap-bot?)
  • Exact name of trade (many have similar names, and much trading is rapid)
  • User name (c’mon)

End rant, let’s go to Manila, Philippines. This card was received via Postcard United, and the sender tells me about “the Philippine jeepney–a unique mode of transportation here in my country.”  They sound like an adventure!

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Next, from Athens, Greece via a tag trade, comes the candy package, the contents of which are described by the sender as “ION Baloo, amazing butter candies.”  Onto the back of the card, she glued a panel from a box of tea I assume she also likes.  Scroll down & you’ll see it.

I got a colorful card & message from the Netherlands, in a regular Postcrossing incoming:

“I love the USA, I practically visit every year.  I’ve seen quite a lot of it…last visit was to San Francisco, what a beautiful city!  In daily life, I’m a nurse because I love to take care of people.  It was like a calling for me.”

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Another Postcrossing card: it’s the cannon, & it’s from a real estate agent in Moscow, Russia.  He printed out his message & glued it to the card–I’m assuming it has to do with English skills.  This reminds me of another card I received recently, which I guess I’ll include in a later post (if I don’t lose it).

Last up, from somewhere in Minnesota via swap-bot, is that cereal.  The sender tells me, “for ‘diet’ food, it’s actually pretty good.”

Okay, time to look at all of the stamps, stickers, & stuff.  The Totoro on the 1st image looks like a stamp, but is just part of the postcard printing.  My favorite 3 stamps down here, in order of scrolling appearance, are the spoonbill (U.S.), the chicken (Singapore), and the flowers (Malaysia.  How about for you?

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A Burger Topped with Tuna Salad? Received from Germany, Japan, Russia, Taiwan, & the U.S.

I got some cool mail from my post pal in Tokyo, Japan!  And it seems that “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” has been on stage there recently–just look at the envelope she made!

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I love that postcard on the right, Pig-Pen & Peppermint Patty dancing.  It doesn’t show from my scan, but that seems to be a photo of original art.  The piece at a bottom, which I’ll use as a bookmark, was her ticket into the Snoopy Museum Tokyo.  She took some photos to show me, but first, let’s take a look at the back of her envelope.

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Okay, the photos inside the museum–and of her lunch.  Those statues are so cool!

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She told me about her visit (her 2nd time there):

“The theme was ‘Hello Snoopy, Again’ in this season (until April).  Snoopy is good at disguise, so there were many kind of Snoopy art as a vulture, penguin, helicopter, and so on.”

I love the old strips of Snoopy doing imitations. My favorites are when he copies Violet, Lucy, and even Mickey Mouse!

She told me the statue pictured is one of five in front of the museum, and she also told me the food was tasty, but she didn’t tell me what it was.  I asked her, and am still waiting to hear back.  I recognize the fries, & they look good.  Is that a burger topped with tuna salad?  Are those l’il corn dogs?

More postcards, more food!  Especially loving the two cards from Taiwan.  The delicious bowl of noodles came my way in a Postcrossing Forum “Taiwan meets the world” tag,” and the sender wants to talk movies:

“Last week I watched ‘Arrival.’  It’s interesting, really want to know my future, but impossible.”

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The card covered in food illustrations had been in my Postcrossing Favorites, and was sent to me in a forum tag just for favorites.  The sender writes:

“Greetings from Taiwan.  This card shows some of the most representative of Taiwanese foods.  Lucky that you live in California, there are so many Taiwanese immigrants (I was one of them) that offers authentic Taiwanese foods in Cali!  Give it a try! =D”

As I write this, it has been 2 days since my last stop into a Taiwanese food establishment!

The sushi card came to me from Georgsmarienhütte, Germany, via Postcrossing. The sender writes:

“I live with my wife in a small town (35,000 people).  We are both retired and enjoy traveling.  We prefer the sea, mountain hiking, and cycling along rivers.  One of our hobbies is playing pétanque, you know?  Now we are waiting for a nice springtime.”

I learned something!  Pétanque was a mystery to me, and when the description started out by saying it was a form of “boules,” I was more confused, still!  The most helpful description I saw pretty much called it horseshoes, but with balls.

Time for the last set of cards, starting with that lovely lighthouse photo taken by a Postcrosser in Taichung, Taiwan.  This was for a “photo you have taken yourself” forum tag, and the photographer tells me:

“I took the photo in Green Island, a volcanic island in the Pacific Ocean about 33 km off the eastern coast of Taiwan.  I love the beautiful place very much.”

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The drawing of the two people came to me from Karelia, Russia, via Postcard United.  The sender tells me the illustration is “of the Siberian fairy tales,” but I’m sad to say that she didn’t tell me which one(s).  If you know something, please say something.

Finally, there’s the San Diego postcard, sent to me thanks to a Postcrossing Forum “last trip/vacation tag.”  Flipping it over:

“Greetings from Arizona! I just got back from a road trip to San Diego. It was a lot of fun and I especially enjoyed the tour of the Midway.  Tons of things to see and explore!”

Time for all of the stamps, postmarks, stickers, & washi tape!  As usual, I’m especially enjoying the beautiful Taiwanese fruit stamps.  I had never seen the stamps on the back of the San Diego card before, and I mentioned it to the sender.  She said that during her trip, she found a stamp dealer who was selling old U.S. postage at below-marked price.  Cool!

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The fish tape is pretty awesome.

Seven in One Blow! Sent to Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Malaysia, & Russia

What a day, yesterday–I started with a card to a post pal, went off & mailed that, then came home in the evening to a Postcrossing Forum inbox full of addresses for trades I’d entered!  That’s seven outgoing cards, all in one day.  Here we go.

The first two cards are from a Monterey Bay Aquarium postcard book, and the first creature is a Purple-Striped Jelly.  It’s off to Hamburg, Germany, in a Marine Life & Sea Creatures tag.

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The Black Tip Reef Shark goes to someone in Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia, who stated a preference for sea creatures cards.  I didn’t realize it until I was addressing the card, but he is the same person who sent the two very-fully written cards I received last week!

I signed up in a “food & drinks” tag, for which I am sending one of my restaurant wall postcards off to Volgograd, Russia.

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I recently got a bunch of new San Francisco postcards–not from SF, of course.  If you can find touristy postcards around the Bay Area, it is safe to say that whatever the city, they carry more SF cards than those depicting their own city.  And do you notice what’s so beautiful about this SF card?  It barely shows Frisco at all!  Just looking off across the Bay to the Marin Headlands.  This one is off to Changchun, Jilin, China.

A Postcrosser in Gloucester, Ontario, Canada, selected the Fairyland post office from among my available cards I had posted for a  “you can choose” tag.

Vote for Franklin! That’s the first of these cards I prepped & sent, and it went to my Peanuts-loving postal pal in Tokyo, Japan.

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Finally comes the panel from a box of Nesquik Cereal (YUCK), off on its way to Nanjing, Jiangsu, China.  It’s off in a food package postcard tag, and yes, it’s better off as a postcard than as a package for part of an awful breakfast.

Time to turn everything over, & enjoy the stamps, stamps, stickers, & washi tape!  I’m loving my new fish stickers (purchased in the same stationary store where I found the SF postcards).  I like them so much, I’m afraid they will be gone quite soon!

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All in One Day! Received from Australia, Finland, Malaysia, Russia, & Taiwan

First mail day of the week, and my box was full of postcards!  Getting five in one day, I suppose perhaps I should brace myself for the idea that this might be it for the entire week.

Let’s start with “Malaysia Traditional Kue,” my favorite card this time.  I must really like it, to call it my favorite when this is probably the 3rd time I’ve received the card over the course of my Postcrossing career.  It came to me via Postcard United.

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That beautiful tea dragon made its way to me from Oulu, Finland, thanks to a Postcrossing Forum food package tag.  The sender writes:

“This is the strangest tag I have ever participated in!  This package shows one of my fave teas to make in ice tea form–I like white teas for it, raspberry & orange in addition to this.  The cute dragon is a bonus!  I don’t use sugar or other sweeteners in it, so black tea tastes too strong IMO.  I do prefer green teas for warm tea.  The stamp shows one of the crazy competitions we have in Finland–boot throwing.  Others in the series include e.g. Air Guitar (the world championships are here in Oulu!), and wife carrying.  I’ve been to the air guitar world championships a few times, but it was years ago.  It’s a fun contest to watch and some performances are really acrobatic.”

Well.

You’ll get to see the stamp she’s talking about down below, but let’s look at that noodle dish, now.  That’s from Taiwan, an the sender tells me:

“I would really like to show you this food.  “Oyster & pork intestine vermicelli with rice noodles (da chang mian xian in Chinese) is my favorite!

Down below, you can see the stamps from her card, and I’ll share her descriptions of the food found on those.

The rather scary Russian scene is from Russia, via Postcrossing.  In registering the card, I learned the sender is a 12-year-old.

Much less scary is the shark card, which I received from Eden, NSW, Australia via Postcard United.  Pretty cool: a first-day issue card from 1998.  I like that cancellation stamp!  The back of the card is quite interesting; the user employs QUITE a few custom & non-custom ink stamped statements & designs, while still squeezing in  little hand-written message.  I’ve left it all mostly intact below, so you can take it in.

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Beautiful stamps on the card from Taiwan.  The sender tells me the fruit on the left is lian wu, or wax apple, and the pastries at the right are her favorite dessert, “dan huang su, egg with mashed red bean and crispy outside.”

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Dank. Pricey, but Dank: Sent to Germany, Hong Kong,Netherlands, Russia, & Taiwan

I’ve sent five more down the mailbox chute!  We start with two views of Hearst Castle.

The majestic exterior is a Postcrossing draw going to Texel, Netherlands, and the dank interior is a Postcard United draw which if all goes well will wind up in Magdeburg, Germany.

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Rapunzel is headed for Hong Kong in a Postcrossing Forum tag.  The recipient likes Disney princesses.  This is a piece of concept art from one of the “Art of Disney” sets.  Have you ever noticed how the concept art (especially now in the digitally-rendered film age) is so often much more beautiful than the final product?

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The Smurfs are off to Novosibirsk, Russia (the third-most populous city in Russia after Moscow and St. Petersburg), in a Postcrossing Forum tag that’s all about looking at your partner’s favorites, and sending them a card you think they will like.  I know she’ll like this card, because it was one of her favorites!

Finally, Fremont went off via Postcard United to Tainan, Taiwan.  The recipient was interested in seeing & learning about local geography, so I told him about the winding canyon road near here that has been so often closed due to mudslides in unseasonably-heavy rains.

And so we have reached that time again: time for stamps, stickers, & washi tape:

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An Extra Finger: Received from Chile, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, & Taiwan

I’ve got a handful with an extra finger, all from either Postcrossing Forum trades or Postcard United.  Let’s start with my favorite postcard from this round, that very pretty food map from Taiwan.

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The sender tells me that the card is “showing local cuisines in different area.  You can find rice dumpling, xiao long bao, beef noodle soup, pearl bubble tea, fried oyster egg, fruits snow ice, I feel hungry now writing this card LOL.”

Me, too!  And in case you’re still virtually hungry, you can virtually feed yourself with those plates full of sushi from Japan. This card’s sender writes:

“I live in a small town in Osaka with my family and some pets.  Osaka is the second largest city in Japan.  I’m a big fan of U.S. and have visited there 3 times.  My last trip was to CA last December.  It was amazing and want to come back again.”

I asked her where she went while she was in California. She told me, “we went to Disneyland of course, Disney Adventure, Hollywood, Universal Studios etc! I will never forget the amazing holiday there. My daughters keep saying they’re dying to be back again…so do I!!!”

Next up is the hipster raccoon, and it came to me from a sender in Russia who is also a traveler: “I was in France, Spain, Ukraine, Israel, Egypt and India.  🙂 I like to read books about travel too.  My favorite author is Karin Muller!”

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The Alice in Wonderland drawing came to me not from one of the sources I earlier cited, but swap-bot, and its sender tells me about her region of Chile:

“We have beaches and to the other side mountains with volcano, national parks and huge, tall and millennial trees called Araucaria.  I think you like here (9th region of Chile, La Araucanía ).

Next up, from northern Italy, is what the sender describes as a public swimming pool in her city.  I have this pegged as a retro card, but how would I know?   What do YOU think–old card, or new?

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Finally, there’s that perfectly lovely view of Utah’s Bryce Canyon, on a card which ended up being the most disappointing of the lot for me.  WHY?  Because it was sent to me from Malaysia. I’m fairly certain she would have been disappointed if I were to send her a Malaysia postcard.  What do you think?

Anyhow, the stamps on the back of the card are gorgeous–it’s hard to beat Malaysia’s stamps, in my book–and she wrote a nice message:

“Oh, I had a lovely time reading through your profile; you really do enjoy lots of things 🙂 I’m glad that you enjoy Malaysian cuisine!  What’s your favourite dish? Have you tried durians before and sambal petai, I wonder? I’m 19 y.o., studying arts and social sciences.  I hope one day to make a positive change for the natives of my land.”

How about these stamps?  In addition to the Malaysian ones, I also like the Taiwanese fish & elephants, and the food from Japan.

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