So Much Talk of Food: Received from Canada, China, Japan, Russia, Taiwan, & the U.K.

Look at these two cool mailbox-shaped cards from my postcard pal in Tokyo, Japan! Since I am perpetually behind in logging my cards, or course these two were received 6 months apart! I swear some of today’s post will be recently-received cards. I don’t know for sure, but I’ll swear it, anyhow. These are the times in which we live.

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Okay, I received this tray of XLB not so long ago. This is a really substantial, thick, plasticized card, and I love it. I love XLB. It’s a direct swap with a Postcrosser in Taiwan, and the printing on the card reads:

Taiwan mini steamed dumplings, a snack originally from Shanghai, has been improved upon and is known internationally. Their wrapper is famed for its tender, smoother, and somewhat translucent, rather than being white and fluffy.

The postcard’s sender adds still more detail:

Mini steamed dumplings (Xiao Long Bao) is one of the most famous food in Taiwan. DIN TAI FUNG is the most famous chain stores and I think it has also some stores in California! Have you tried it before? 

Yes, I have.

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More food I love, Dan Tat! It’s a regular Postcrossing card from Hong Kong, and the sender says that egg tarts are her favorite snack, and…

Have you ever tried it when you were eating around in HK? Apart from egg tart, fish ball, and siu mai (pork/fish dumpling) are also popular street food here.

Okay, here comes some food I’m less excited about. This is partly because the brand is not a great one, and anything you can make that color is not actual chocolate. I do love food package postcards, though! I received it in just such a trade, from a sender in Japan who tells me:

My boss gave me Hawaiian Host chocolate. He bought the chocolate in Hawaii. I’d like to visit Hawaii someday.

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More food-related fun from Japan, from a sender in Tokyo who tells me that when she was writing to me (back in January), the city was having its first heavy snow in 4 years, and she’d already seen 2 traffic accidents that day. To be honest, when it comes to snow, I’d like to visit Hawaii. And not the high elevations where there is actually snow.

If you thought you’d seen the last of postcards & food from Taiwan in this post… well, you were mistaken. The scan, unfortunately, fails to accurately portray the golden undertones & sparkly nature of this card–a card I would call “delicious,” if not for the cat stuck amidst the noodles.

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My second regular Postcrossing card this time is also my 2nd steamer basket of deliciousness, this time from China. Making this post is making me really–did you think I’m about to say hungry? FULL, actually! This sender tells me she loves “K-pop, music, plants, etc.”

I wonder if she loves seals. I do! Third regular Postcrossing card is from Germany. We may have moved on to animals here, but the sender is still talking about food!

I’m also a big lover of the Asian food, especially Thai, as I love the spices there. In August we’ll travel to Thailand again, and I’m looking forward to all those delicious meals!      

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This beautiful swimming seal came to me from Canada, from a sender who tells me she visited The Aquarium of Niagara in New York at the end of last year, and that the seals “have a nice rocky outdoor exhibit. They seemed to love the cold!”

Squirrels! I love watching squirrels. It’s fun to turn this card sideways, to make it look like the little guy is sitting at a table, giving us an odd look. Nah: he’s giving us an odd look while peering around a tree. This is a regular Postcrossing incoming from Germany, from a sender who tells me that like me:

I also like to eat Asian food, I have often eaten Thai food in Thailand and Indian food in India, what an explosion of different tastes!

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The Beatrix Potter squirrels came to me in a Postcrossing Forum tag for cards bearing children’s book illustrations, and it’s from someone in the U.K.:

As a Hongkonger living overseas, its always very fascinating to hear foreigners talking about Hong Kong and other east Asian countries. As you live so close to San Francisco, I think you can eat a lot of authentic Chinese food! BTW SF is my favorite city in the USA!”

Okay, now what–oh, an otter! I love sea otters. This arrived from Japan in a Postcrossing Forum marine life tag, and I hope you are braced for more food talk:

I was living in Santa Clara until August 2017. I used to eat around in Bay Area. Especially I love “Beyond Thai” in Fremont and “Madras Cafe” in Sunnyvale. Ah… I wanna go back there… What is your favorite restaurant? Enjoy your meal!

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Last card, the seagull, is from a Postcrosser in Murmansk, Russia. She tells me she is in the far northern part of Russia:

There is very, very cold all year and a lot of snow. =)

Okay… time for stamps, stickers, and washi tape!Some great stuff down here.

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22 Postcards, and Most of them Headed to Japan: Sent to China, Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, Spain, Taiwan, & the USA

Have you ever sent someone the exact same card twice? I have.

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It wasn’t until I’d fully addressed, stamped & decorated this evil queen card, that I’d suddenly realized I’d sent the person the same card–perhaps only a week before. This is part of a Postcrossing Forum Disney card tag, by the way, to a recipient in Shanghai, China. You can see the previous (same) card I sent her, by the way, in my recent post before this one.

The good news in realize what I’d done before I’d written the message was that I could start with an apology. Also, I promised to send her a different Disney card in a couple of days–which I did. Hence the Mickey dots here.

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Another copy of the same card went to a different Postcrosser in Shanghai, in a “you choose” tag. He chose.

Coit Tower went off to České Budějovice, Czech Republic, to a recipient requesting postcards with famous places & cities in the U.S. When I worked in S.F., I used to frequently climb the hundreds of steps to get to this monument. The edifice itself wasn’t the goal–it was the beautiful, lush private gardens all the way up–a real escape from the dingy city.

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Frisco’s Chinatown when to Taoyuan, Taiwan, in a “see my favorites & surprise me” tag. This recipient seems to like a lot of stylized, touristy cards.

The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas went to Renkum, Netherlands. That Postcrosser said she liked cards with “special buildings,” and this gateway out in the middle of nowhere leads to a really great Chinese vegetarian restaurant! So special, it’s worth the very long drive from anywhere. Okay, so there may or may not be a better one or two near me, but the remoteness, and authentic spirit–I mean, there are peacocks and deer on the grounds–make it pretty precious.

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Bigfoot went to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to someone originally from England who said he liked anything cute/weird/scary.

It’s REALLY good, sometimes, to be able to say a lot about the image on a postcard. For instance, when a Postcrosser gives you nothing to say to them personally:

“Hallo, I am looking for nice cards, as collecting postcards is one of my favourite hobbies. Preferring cards showing towns, castles, bridges or buildings, I also like cards of train stations or unusual tourist cards …. Thanks a lot and have fun”

I mean, what could I write to relate? “Hallo, I, too, am in this just for the postcards, and not the interactive element of the pastime! I enjoyed learning nothing about you from your non-profile!”

So I did find a “castle” postcard, and wrote about how what’s even better is the thousands of elephant seals down on the beach. I sent the card off to Gundremmingen, Germany.

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I have nothing to say about pineapple-ring guy, which was requested in a tag by a Postcrosser in Köln, Germany, so I think I wrote something about my weekend. I really need to consistently photograph the backs of my outgoing cards.

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Next we’ve got a couple of cards for coloring, sold by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The first card depicts the museum itself; I don’t recognize the bridge in the second card, but it’s the flowers I like. The cards go to postcard pals in Hawaii and Japan.

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Mushu from Mulan goes to Crewkerne, Somerset, England, in a regular Postcrossing draw. The recipient is a young French person teaching her language at a prep school, and she likes Disney, sushi, and turtles. Based on that information, I’m sure you will be able to identify the card’s backside below.

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This California map was requested by a new Postcrosser in Taipei, Taiwan, outside of any assignment or trade. She had seen me post my stash in an “offers” thread, saw one she liked, then taken a look at my favorites & discovered she had a couple of them. This card is on its way, and I am trusting there is one from her heading my way, too!

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The next postcard is cut from a food package, and it’s off to Osaka, Japan! Hodo Soy is based in Hayward, California (in the SF Bay Area), and is sold in local Asian supermarkets. I’ve had the tofu veggie burgers a couple of times, and really enjoyed them.

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It’s a good thing Franklin & Linus are getting along, because they’ve got a long trip ahead: off they go to Kobeshi, Hyogoken, Japan.

Thanks to a USPS catalog I got in the mail, I learned that they are selling books of postcards to go with their Disney Villains stamps! Yes, I snapped some right up. Here goes the first round: Maleficent to Tokyo, Japan; Snow White’s Mommy Dearest to Shenzhen, Guangdong, China; and Cap’n Hook to Tomiya, Miyagi, Japan.

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Okay, that all might’ve been a bit too exciting, so I’ll bring down the room a bit before moving on to part two of the post. These last two cards are regular Postcrossing draws, and are going to Barcelona, Spain; and Climbach, France.

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Okay, time for the backsides! Stamps, stickers, & washi tape. See if you can spot Snoopy looking rather guilty.

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SCUBA Chuck: Sent to Belgium, Canada, China, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, & Taiwan

TWENTY outgoing cards in this post! This all happened over the course of a few weeks.

Several more Postcrossing Forum tags heading out. Charlie Brown & Woodstock are heading for Shanghai, China. If you poke around the Santa Rosa area, you will find many Peanuts statues, decorated by local artists in many different styles. My favorite of the few I’ve spotted stands outside a seafood restaurant in a coastal area: it’s Charlie Brown in SCUBA gear.
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The food package is going to Guangzhou, Guangdong, China. I don’t remember much about the cookies, but it says “crisp and buttery,” so therefore I know I loved them.

From Guangzhou, Guangdong, we go to Guiyang, GuiZhou, China— that’s where this big “Let’s Go with Lucy” card is headed. A card as large as this leaves a large canvas for stickers & washi tape, as well as plenty of room for a message. I’ve obscured the message, but you can see the stamps, stickers, & washi tape below.

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Lucy pounding sand went off to Hirai, Wakayama, Japan; and Linus the door-to-door salesman to Tsushima, Aichi, Japan.

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I chose Charlie Brown for a recipient in Tokyo, Japan. The evil queen went to Shanghai, China, and the beautiful sea otter was destined for Eutin, Germany.

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“California is So Cool.” When I made a Disneyland trip not so long back, I tried to find postcards in the park, but failed. This I bought at a convenience store across the street, and now it goes out to Koriyama, Fukushima, Japan in a Disney cards tag.

Postcard 421“California Has Everything.” Now we are clearly bragging. This one is heading for Ashikaga, Tochigi, Japan, in a “what I’m reading now” tag. I’m reading The Underground Railroad, by Colson Whitehead.

Completing the California trilogy is the California Coast Highway 1 postcard, careening off to Hong Kong.

Another California card? Yes, this view of Point Lobos goes via a rare Postcrossing draw, to a recipient in Gnesta, Sweden, who expressed a preference for cards showing places–and Point Lobos is a great place!

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A second Postcrossing draw; this one goes to Dirgenheim, Germany. Sad to say, this lovely series of national park postcards neglects to mention the state where each park is located. This despite a long passage of text on the back so expansive that it leaves room for only a single stamp! The designer really does not understand the postally-obsessed. Not to mention that the postmark will more that likely obscure all of that printed prose.

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Another one of the national park cards: okay, this one does mention on the back that Acadia National Park is on the Maine coast. This one is a regular Postcrossing draw, and goes to Lahti, Finland. The recipient requested that people not use stickers or washi tape on her cards, so I won’t bother to flip this one over for you.

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Scuttle and his dinglehopper are going to Kuwana, Mie, Japan, in a Disney cards tag. Ursula is on the back of the card (proof below).

Now several more regular Postcrossing draws: not something I do so often any more, but I am just in the mood to send out more cards (and by extension, receive more). The California Natural Wonders card was actually in the “favorites” of the person to receive it; she lives in Zoetermer, Netherlands.

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The lemurs are going to a paleontologist in Omsk, Russia. She wanted illustrations of animals, so here she goes!

The map card goes to a map card lover in Taipei, Taiwan; and the bridge card goes to Dendermonde, Belgium, to a lover of touristy cards.

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Lucy and Schroeder are going to a Peanuts lover in Espanola, Ontario, Canada. Unlike the recipient in Finland, this person loves a decorated card, so I did my best on the backside.

Time for stamps, stickers, & stuff. I love these brand-new Bioluminescent Life stamps from the USPS!

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My Favorite is the Fruity Stamp from Malaysia: Received from China, England, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, & the U.S.

I have learned what a “Maximum Card” is! Well, at least if the sender of this stamp-on-a-matching-card (received via Postcrossing from China) is to be believed. The college student writes:

“The picture of the postcard is Chinese New’s famous painter, art educator Liu Haisu. Hope you enjoy this Maximum Card!”

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That card with the something-or-the-other with the diamond-shaped hole… well, it came by way from Indonesia via Postcard United, and the sender wrote little more than “Greetings from Indonesia”–but fortunately, the words “Borobudur, Jawa Tengah” were printed on the front, and when I asked Jeeves, he told me this:

Borobudur, or Barabudur is a 9th-century Mahayana Buddhist temple in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia, and the world’s largest Buddhist temple. The temple consists of nine stacked platforms, six square and three circular, topped by a central dome. It is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. The monument is the single most visited tourist attraction in Indonesia. The high volume of visitors ascending the Borobudur’s narrow stairs has caused a severe wear out on the stone of the stairs, eroding the stones surface and made them thinner and smoother.

Sounds like tourist heck!

The orangey building painting is from Taiwan, via Postcard United:

I’m sending you a card image of an UNESCO site in which I like to visit one day–“Toulou,” an unique historical architecture albeit structure that exists in southeastern China. Such structure is aparments alike as its interior has many households. Toulou comes in square, rectangular, circular and oval like architecture. Toulou in Chinese means “soil floors.”

I’m so confused; I looked up “Toulou China UNESCO” online, & none of the photos seems to resemble this postczrd image.

From India, via Postcard United, I received the hilltop-castley-forty-looking “General View Golconda Fort.” A couple of issue with the card: it’s printed on what’s a lightish-medium-weight magazine cover stock (but I don’t care); and the “caption” printed on the other side covers all of the writable space, leaving the sender to squeeze a greeting & signature into the corners (and I do care). But it’s always nice to receive a card from India.

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The white gate with pigeons came from Taiwan via Postcard United, and there’s not much of a message, but lovely stamps, and a very special dog postmark that the sender writes was only available on the day she sent the card. Wow, other countries sure to have special mail/postcard cultures!

That scene from the Thames came from London via Postcrossing, and the sender says:

“This time of the year it’s almost always cloudy outside, but since it’s a big city you can always find somewhere indoor forgetting about the weather!”

Do you think the books below were purchased soley for their uniform spines? The card came to me from somewhere in the U.S. via swap-bot–and you need to scroll down & see the very old stamps the sender used. She writes:

“I only have a handful of old books, probably oldest is from 1880s. I stared reading it and it was boring, LOL.”

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I’m not sure what’s going on in that dark painting that looks like a child’s hand holding a wooden horse’s head. Creepy. It’s from Russia, and the decorations on the back–all snacks & Starbucks–lighten the mood considerably. It came my way in a Postcrossing Forum “last movie I’ve seen tag,” and if you look for the stickers I mentioned below, you’ll be able to read about her last movie seen.

That snowy scene is from Takamatsu City, Japan, and the sender sets the scene:
“This garden was constructed by the feudal lords in 16th to 17th century. It’s open to the public now, one of my favorite sites to visit. This card shows a snowy view, however, it hardly snows here. Good photo, I think.”

I’d love to see it green & springy!

We’ll transition over to the stamps by way of this stamp-themed postcard from Malaysia. Much more pleasing are the real-life stamps used to mail the card. Malaysian stamps never disappoint! I love the center of the three used, laden as it is with jackfruit, durian, mangosteen, and rambutan!

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So Hard to Keep Track, Though: Sent to China, Greece, Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Taiwan, & Thailand

Lots of cards to show off this time: more than I can actually keep track of, as you’ll see. Mostly Postcrossing Forum tags, with a couple of Postcard United sends. Please let me know what you like!

I love sea otters! This one goes to Bangkok, Thailand–and I am jealous.

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Trinidad, California goes to Lublin, Poland

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This beautiful tiger is headed for Hong Kong. Also to Diessen, Netherlands!

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The pelicans should land with a brand-new Postcrosser in Guangzhou, Guangdong, China. Although he is participating in the forum tags, he has yet to upload a profile, which is always a disappointment to me.

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California Coast Highway 1 went off to Larissa, Greece, and the Grinch (from the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden in Springfield, Massachusetts) went to Saitama, Japan.

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Uhm, I didn’t do a good job keeping records on this next pair, but one is going to New Taipei City, Taiwan. This stuff is hard.

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Here we have one off to Sarsborg, Norway. I hope the recipient enjoys this dramatic coastal scene.

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Time for stamps, stickers, & washi tape. Do you have any favorites?

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Postal Mishaps & Mystery Liquids: Received from Czech Republic, Hong Kong, Taiwan, & the U.S.

Foghorn Leghorn here is at Magic Mountain in Southern California, but the sender is from Queen Creek, Arizona. She sent the card to me in a swap-bot “cartoon animal postcard” trade, and she writes:

I have never been to Magic Mountain, but this ride looks like a lot of fun!

I have never been there, either. I’ve driven past many times, but when you are in that neighborhood, well, for me the correct amusement park destination is always Disneyland.

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More toons: the caption on the back of this card tells me it is Mr. Muddle:

Poor Mr. Muddle just couldn’t get anything right. Everything he did, everything he tried, everything he said was muddled.

I know the feeling, I do. This is another swap-bot trade–“children’s book illustration postcard,” this time–and it’s from a swapper in Glencoe, Oklahoma. He writes:

My mom is a retired kindergarten teacher. I grew up on Mr. Men & Little Miss books. I enjoyed your movie review blog. I’m glad someone else enjoyed Ra.One!

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Someone from Slavkov, Czech Republic was assigned to me by Postcrossing, and she sent me the Pooh card. Unfortunately, some postal mishap claimed a large section of the message portion–peeled it right off. It’s a shame, because from what I could tell, she was actually writing a very substantive, friendly message. The mostly-blank cards always make it intact.

Another regular Postcrossing draw, this one from a sender in Taipei City, Taiwan who says he likes traveling and photography. Isn’t the idea of a “wind-power park” interesting? I was intrigued–and I really like that piece of crab art–so I looked it up. It’s right by the sea, it’s got recreation & performance spaces, and those 7 windmills generate enough electricity to power the park for four hours after dark. Better still, there are more sea creature mosaic statues! Isn’t it cool to learn new things through Postcrossing?

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That dolphin image is…interesting. I certainly prefer it to a photo of a dolphin in a swimming pool. I received it from Hong Kong, via a Postcrossing Forum trade of sea creatures cards. As we transition into the stamps, stickers, & washi tape portion of this post, let me express my appreciation for the BACK of the last card, which has a lot going on. I was about to express how much I am enjoying that Green Spot soda sticker, but when I initially looked it up, it turned out Green Spot is a booze. That didn’t seem right, so I tried again, & found the soda. So much learning!

I also really like the avocado stamp from Taiwan. Do you have any favorites this time?

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Just Dropped You a Line to Say ABSOLUTELY NOTHING: Received from Indonesia & Taiwan

Two postcards in recently via Postcard United, and that is not the only thing these two have in common.  Before we go further, though, let’s take a look at the front of the cards.

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I love that gateway, and the arch beyond.  The card came to me from Changhua, Taiwan, and its caption tells us this about the scene:

The Gateway to the East-West Cross-Island Highway, Hualien: after passing through the vermilion archway, you will be greeted by the breathtaking splendor of Taroko Gorge

The other card was sent to me from Pare, Kediri, Jawa Timur, Indonesia, and it has some beautiful & interesting stamps on the back (as does the other card).

Oh, yes, the backs of the cards; let’s talk about those, because those are what tie these two cards so inexorably together.  Have a look:

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Oh, look: I could write both of those messages in one Tweet, and STILL have room to add something interesting!

From Taiwan:

Greetings from Taiwan.

Yes.  The stamps, postmark, & photo tipped me off to that.  Thanks for the confirmation, though.

From Indonesia:

I hope you will like this card & stamps

I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt that they selected the cards & stamps in hopes I would like them.

Now, this 2nd person, according to Postcard United, has sent 505 cards.  And on her profile, she wishes everyone a “fascinating and crazy postcrossing”–which is more than she wrote on my card!

What is the point of sending a card if you don’t want to write anything on it?  I’m not fascinated, but it does sorta drive me crazy.  I could rant a lot more, I suppose, but this is just — sad.  Some people do have to work harder to come up with something to say.  For this, Postcrossing does offer some help, offering its answers to the question: “What should I write on the postcard?”

Traveling, Recycling–and Whittling Down the Dissapointassortment: Sent to Belgium, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Taiwan, & the U.S.

I’ve got cards going out to seven different countries, all but one being signees of the Paris Agreement.

Hey, I got rid of one of my Disappointassortment cards!  That heart locket card goes out in a Postcrossing draw to Brasschaat, Flanders, Belgium, to a recipient who said she likes cards with hearts on them.

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The mail-a-sea-lion card goes to a sea-lion-loving family member.  I love sea lions, too!  Scroll down, and you’ll be able to see the other side of this very functional card.

It’s the Grinch!  He and a lot of other offspring of Dr. Seuss’s imagination reside in Springfield, Massachusetts, in the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden.  I visited this site in May, just missing by a couple of weeks or so the grand opening of the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum!  But I did get some postcards, & sent this one to Cindi in Hawaii.postcard128

I also visited the PEZ factory in Orange, Connecticut! What a fun experience.  I bought a lot of stuff–and I also picked up some free postcards they had, promoting their party room.  This one went to North Hollywood, California, for a very specific swap-bot trade: “Free/Ad Card: I picked this up on vacation.”  I just knew these would come in handy.

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The fox went off toward Tokyo, Japan, for a Postcrossing Forum USA/Asia tag.  The recipient said she liked foxes!

There’s a second Disappointment card going away!  These ballet folklórico dancers are not the problem; it’s that the card manufacturers failed to give context for the card, and…oh, just refer to the original post.  The card went off to Shenzhen, Guangdong, China, in a Postcrossing Forum “China Meets the World” tag.  The recipient said he liked cards featuring cultural celebrations for our area, and, well, here in the San Francisco Bay Area, this counts!  I grew up enjoying ballet folklórico in schools, museums, and other settings.

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Something not so easily found in the Bay Area is great Thai food.  Oh, there are Thai restaurants absolutely EVERYWHERE… but just try finding a Southeast Asian person who would want to eat in any of them.  I have finally found two restaurants that break that sad mold, and one is San Francisco’s Kin Khao.  You, I assume, being someone who is interested in postcards, you may love to walk into this restaurant to find a wall decorated with a huge postcard rack, full of food cards yours for the taking!  I’ve mentioned this before; you can see the rack in that post, here.  This one goes to Stetten, Germany for another specific swap-bot trade: “Free Postcard–Restaurant/Coffee Shop.”

Next we have a couple of cards I created from boxes of frozen food, for another swap-bot trade of “up-cycled cardboard.”  I don’t usually buy frozen prepared food, but these two items from my local Indian supermarkets reeled me in.  The Kati sandwiches (card going to Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada) seemed like an improvement on Hot Pockets (a low bar; Hot Pockets are nasty), and they were.  As for the other package (going to South Elgin, Illinois), I really like good sambhar.  This was not really good sambhar.  Better stick with home or restaurant-made.  THEY MAKE FOR NICE POSTCARDS, THOUGH!

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This Mickey Mouse card went to Longquan Station, Taiwan, via a Postcrossing Forum Disney card tag.

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Okay, let’s move on to the stamps, stickers, washi tape, & stuff.  I think there may be some stamps here you haven’t seen before.  Please share your thoughts!

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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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Keep the Babies Out of the Cabbage, You Monster: Sent to Bulgaria, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, & Taiwan

It’s too easy for me not to keep track of the cards I send, so right now I’ll do the difficult thing, and make note of them (while I still remember, somewhat).

These first two cards (and several of each, by the way) were part of the stash I acquired a few days ago while hitting the state map card jackpot.  Since they are not state map cards, though, I didn’t share them when I wrote about the experience.

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Morro Bay is a pretty good place to see sea otters.

The sea otters are working their way toward Hong Kong, and the Morro Bay card toward Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan. It doesn’t show in my scan, but the flowers & the lettering in the latter card are covered in glitter.  It’s kind of awful, and I really don’t know if I even noticed it at the gas station where I was making my purchase, excited as I was to be filling my hands with dozens & dozens of state map cards so many Postcrossers seem to covet.  The recipient this time around wanted flowers & scenery, and I’m hoping she won’t mind a little glitter along with those things.  Would you?

This diner scene was chosen by a Postcrosser in Köln, Germany, in a “you can choose” thread.

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Hey, I just noticed that row of PEZ dispensers along the ceiling!  Scanning technology is awesome.

I just received this multi-image Belfast card a short time ago, and now it’s off for Sofia, Bulgaria in a swap-bot “recycled postcard” swap, in which we were to put a new back on a card we’d received.

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I REALLY like that piece of fish art.  If I were to visit Belfast, I’d certainly have to go & see that big fish.

The recipient of this card, her profile–well, it’s only a list of wants & don’t wants (leaving me very little to write about–I chose a few lines about the card itself & its provenance), headed by the line–in bold–“I collect only NEW postcards with a REAL photograph on them!”  This very heading makes me wonder why she wants to enter this swap for a no-longer-new-card.  The good news is, once of her big “wants” is touristy card (but she doesn’t like fish, so I may be eviscerated), so I mail this off with fingers crossed.  Oh, swap-bot, why are you so swap-botty?

Next up is a food package postcard headed for a medical student in Tokorozawa, Saitama, Japan.  Maybe she will become the doctor who is able to develop a vaccine preventing Cap’n Crunch from tearing up the roofs of peoples’ mouths.

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Even if that never comes to pass, though, this Postcrosser already won me over with this set of horrors she hopes to never find in her mailbox:

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Another cereal, another food package tag, another country: this chocolatey panel went out to Seoul, South Korea.

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Getting into some older, previously-unlogged stuff now… I think they are both regular Postcrossing draws, but what do I know?  The indoor swimming pool from Hearst Castle went off to Taipei, Taiwan, and the bear should have ended up in Tokyo, Japan.

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Time for a look at the stamps, stickers, & washi tape:

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