Reclaiming My Time: Sent to China, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, Serbia, Taiwan, the U.S. & the U.K.

In my last post, I lamented how attempting to track my postcard comings & goings is claiming too much time. Thanks to some commenters on the post, and some introspection, I have begun to implement a few techniques to chip away at the time suck:

  • Going as I go: I am posting outgoing cards & info in a draft as I go–no more spending time trying to rediscover the information to post. I will be clearing all the shots on my phone & computer that I may or may not have already posted. This is huge.
  • Faster than scanning: I will use the photoscan app on my phone when it seems faster. It’s–inelegant, as you’ll notice below, but it makes things faster!
  • Keep it simple: I have begun editing my scans using PAINT! Just a simple shrink & crop. The free photo editing sites are adding more hoops that suck up time and computer space, so this has made a HUGE amount of difference.
  • –And simpler: However I scan the backs of my postcards, I am trying to do it BEFORE I write them out. This means less editing later to protect recipients’ personal info.
  • Making choices: Moving forward, when I finally make another post of received postcards, I may well leave out the ones I don’t care for so much (though I’d still show stamps I like). This has got to save a lot of time, right? We’ll play that one as we go.

Updates on this project as we go, and your input welcome. OKAY, let’s get on with the cards! When you see repeated cities down below, some may be going to the same person in that city. Sometimes. Didn’t necessarily keep track. See how well I’m doing with this project, already?

First off, there’s a food package postcard going to Ruian, Zhejiang, China. When I requested the recipient’s address, I received a response that this was to be a greeting for her friend’s 18th birthday, that the friend would like a Marvel card, and that she likes two singers no one over the age of 17 has ever heard of. Since this is a food package postcard tag, I sent her this sweet card, with the birthday greeting, and lots of stickers (which you will see, if you scroll down far enough).

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A second panel like this is going to Osaka, Japan.

Cute otters heading to Yonago, Tottori, Japan

postcard a Monterey Bay Aquarium otter mommy and baby

Morro Rock going to Taoyuan, Taiwan

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The evil queen is off to Essen, Germany. This was in a “I’m Offering” tag, and the recipient had at first selected a card I just could not find in my available cards. I apologized, and this was her second choice. It’s just as well: the first choice was a lovely view of Trinidad. This Postcrosser mentions in her profile that she would like to live in the Caribbean, so I have the feeling she doesn’t realize that the “Trinidad” emblazoned on the missing card actually refers to Trinidad, California.

postcard toon Disney Evil Queen at window

Here’s one going to Novi Sad, Serbia

postcard toon Peanuts

More Peanuts, this by request to a Postcrosser in Taichung City, Taiwan.

postcard toon Peanuts Snoopy

This pair of otters was requested by a Postcrosser in Pencoed, Bridgend, Wales:

Postcard A Sequoia Park Zoo Eureka

By request to St. Petersburg, Russia

Postcards a Women in Science Elizabeth Blackwell

The Aladdin card goes off in a Disney tag to Taichung, Taiwan.1529247783241

One of the handmade envelopes I made some time ago takes the hula Jetoy card (my last, I think) off to Novi Sad, Serbia. The recipient asked that the card be written, but in an envelope to “keep it clean,” I think were the words she used. I don’t usually stick my cards in an envelope, and the standard-sized boxed envelopes I have wouldn’t fit the card–but what the heck.1529330809791

The best thing about this Chinese vegetarian restaurant in San Francisco’s Chintatown? FREE POSTCARDS! This one goes to Orlando, Florida, U.S.A. in a food card tag.

Lucky Creation Vegetarian Restaurant SF

Hey, the Disappointmentassortment rears its head again! I repurposed some stamps accumulated via Postcrossing to salvage an ugly card received in a cheap set I purchased. This goes to Englewood, Colorado, U.S.A., to a Postcrosser who wished for collage cards.

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I drew another name in Postcard United; this card goes to a recipient in Nagoya City, Japan.

postcard a California 4

She’s a power user: 2,610 cards sent through this service in less than 3 years of membership. She’s also one of those people: the ones who list all of their “expired cards” that have disappeared into the ether (or postal service) without being registered. What purposed does this ever serve? I think many people do it just because they see others doing so. In this case the user realizes that close to half of her 380 expired postcards were sent to inactive members. This is probably why Postcard United is now tracking how long senders go between requesting an address.

Elephant & Piggie are bound for Hong Kong, in a Postcrossing Forum trade of children’s book illustrations…

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…and California’s North Coast should land in Selangor, Malaysia, thanks to another Postcard United draw…and my very next Postcard United draw (a day later) was to Sarawak, Malaysia!

postcard toon Peanuts Mud Pies and Jelly Beans Linus Snoopy

Right after that, I clicked again & came up with Shanghai, China.postcard 338

Back to Postcrossing Forum trades, this Ben & Jerry’s map will go to Kaohsiung, Taiwan. The recipient wanted food cards, and Ben & Jerry’s scoop shops are some of my favorite restaurants! Chocolate Therapy, please…

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Time to show some stamps, stickers, & washi tape. New since the last post are the USPS scratch-n-sniff Popsicle stamps (which pair well with the older ice cream stamps), and also many stickers. What do you like?Hawaii 568

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Of Local Connections, Banana Stickers, & “Lifestyle Bloggers:” Received from China, Japan, Russia, Serbia, Spain, & the U.S.

This beautiful flower postcard was sent to me from Japan, and it wasn’t originally meant as a postcard! The sender explains:

This card is famous souvenir cookie’s box from Hokkaido–the northernmost prefecture in Japan.

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The onions are an actual postcard, rather than from a box of souvenir onions or something. The card was sent to me from Kaluga, Russia, by a sender who writes that her town is not far from Moscow, and:

We are proud of Cosmonautics State Museum. I love art, puzzles, psychology.

The child-on-cattle card came from China, and the sender explains:

This kind of painting is called shuimo, an old traditional kind. There’s a kid riding on the back of a cattle, farm cattle. Guess you know the importance of cattles to ancient Chinese people. Also, there’s a poem written in ancient Chinese characters. The poem dated from 2500 years ago.

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The Indian Court card came to me from Wisconsin via Postcard United–Postcard United does that thing, pairing a person with someone from their own country. It also does stuff like this:

Postcard United

That is correct: as of the moment I am writing this, I have received 36 more postcards than I have mailed out. This embarrassment of riches points out the fact that other people out there are getting screwed over.

One more thing of note about that card: the man who sent it decorated it with a couple of banana stickers. Scroll down, you’ll see.

This sketchy little village is also from the U.S., but via a swap-bot trade. The sender, who lives somewhere near San Diego, is just the first person in this post who spent some time living not far from me:

Hello! I grew up in Hayward, lived there until I was 20. Not too far from you. 🙂

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The Japan card came from somewhere in–guess what country–via Postcard United. The sender tells me she, too, lived quite close to me for a time:

I spent a year in Oakland, CA as an exchange students & almost every weekend I visited S.F by myself. It was about 30 years ago (!!) But still I ❤ Bay Area and I’m so happy to write to you. My host mother used to work your place as a teacher.

Speaking of true callings, and professions of high purpose & service to humanity, this next card came to me from a self-professed “full-time lifestyle blogger.”

She lives in Belgrade, Serbia, and took time out from her busy schedule to tell me about the card:

You can see “the face” of the Statue of Victory, one of the most known sights in Belgrade. It’s the symbol of our city. You can Google it and see what it looks like in nature. Hope this will help you find out more about our country.

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The card next to the last one looks like death, and it was sent to me from Spain, in a Postcrossing Forum “last movie I’ve seen” thread. She tells me about “My Life as a Zucchini:”

…a French animation film for adults that is just one hour long but the impression it makes lasts for a lifetime. I was deeply moved by it and cried buckets. So if you have not seen it yet, I highly recommend it.

I want to see “Coco,” but I’m not sure if they’ve removed the 21 offensive opening minutes I keep hearing so much about. I would have to adjust my arrival time.

This headphone-wearing letter C is from a Postcrosser in Xinyu, Jiangxi, China. He had a standard message translated into English and printed on a rubber stamp, as you’ll see toward the bottom of this post.

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I end with the “NORMAL” postcard, which I may or may not have shared many moons ago–but it’s not marked as having been logged, so there we have it. This was received from Bonnie Jeanne

This was from Bonnie Jeanne of Postally Yours, who had an “orphaned postcard project” in which she logged the postcards in her personal collection, and people like me would “claim” a card to which they had a personal connection (a place they were from, a favorite place to visit, etc.). She would send us the card in an envelope, and we would write on it, about the card/place, and send it back to her. Her website would share those stories. I participated twice, and really had fun with it. It seems she has moved on to other things. I wish her all the best.

Stamps & stamps & stickers follow. I especially loved this one stamp from Japan, so I made sure to show an enlargement (for my own enjoyment, if for no one else’s).

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