Friday, February 28, 2014

So Long February

Hello from Bitter Cold Alberta, Canada. It is extremely cold out today and it's going to get even colder this evening and overnight. As I write this it is -21 C , with a windchill of -31C. This evening it will drop to -25 C and feel like -36 C. Overnight tonight the temperature is forecasted to be -35 C with a windchill of -47 C. You know , right now it is only -22 C on MARS, yes Mars. Temperatures like these are really Out Of This World. I guess March is coming in like a Polar Bear, not like the old saying , coming in like a Lamb, or a Lion.
Stormy days in winter are always good days to work on postcards and stamps, and Cold days the same. Who wants to go outside and freeze if one doesn't have to. So it's on to postcards.

What better way to start on a Cold day than a card from warm Hawaii, Maui in fact. This first card shows a breathtaking Hawaiian sunrise at Haleakala National Park. The park covers an area of 33,264 acres.   The park features the dormant Haleakala Volcano, which last erupted sometime between 1480 and 1600 AD. The volcano is Maui's highest peak, rising 10,023 ft. above sea level.

This card is compliments of my son Parker and his family. They recently vacationed on Maui and took time to send me a card. Both stamps are self- adhesives from 2013. The top stamp is from a set of 2 Stylistic Flowers and the Butterfly was a single issue.  Also note the Haleakala National Park hand stamp. Interestingly , the card is cancelled Honolulu, on the island of Oahu. I wonder if any mail gets cancelled on Maui. If anyone out there knows , drop me a comment.

Thanks Parker, Amanda, Zach, Xander and Will.

Card number 2 today is a fine Sabena , Belgian World Airlines B737. The 737 series is the best-selling jet airliner in the history of aviation.  The 737 has been continuously manufactured by Boeing since 1967 with 7,865 aircraft delivered and 3,680 orders yet to be fulfilled as of December 2013.  There are, on average, 1,250 Boeing 737s airborne at any given time, with two departing or landing somewhere every five seconds.

Johan of Johan Postcards used 2 copies of the very recently issued Michael Borremans stamp. This is a First Day of Issue cancel as the stamp was issued on Feb 15, 2014. Note the neat cancellation used, it's like the stamp itself.

 I often receive postcards of Aircraft and Airlines , but not often cards of Airports. So now here's a card of Shanghai Pudong International Airport. PVG is the primary international airport serving Shanghai, and a major aviation hub for Asia.. The airport is the main hub for China Eastern Airlines and Shanghai Airlines, and a major international hub for Air China. It is also an Asian-Pacific cargo hub for UPS  and DHL. The DHL hub, opened in July 2012, is said to be the biggest express hub in Asia.

Another reader of this blog, Wang Jia Yi from Shanghai sent this card and used a nice assortment of stamps. From the left the stamps are : a 1998 King Yandi Mauseleum issue , 1of 3 and a 2012 Furniture issue, 1 of 4. Then we have a 2013 Tadpoles issue, 1of 5 and lastly a bird definitive from 2002.

Next is a card from Jyvaskyla, Finland. The city of about 135,000 is located in central Finland.  The city hosts Neste Oil Rally Finland  which is part of the World Rally Championship, evidence of which you can see on the lower right of the card. Also on the card are a couple of hockey players, not from the Olympic team mind you, but Congratulations anyway to the Bronze Medal winning Finnish team. Teemu Selanne, Olli Jokinen , looks good on you. 

Strange thing about this card is that I don't know who sent it. It arrived blank, except for my address. Nice stamp though, it was issued in 2013, 1 of 2 in a Eero Jarnefelt souvenir  sheet honoring the Finnish realist painter.

Gaisen , a PostCrosser from Hong Kong sent my next card. 

The Bird stamps are part of the definitive set of 16 issued in 2006. 

Here's a country that I haven't received many cards from , Brunei. On it you can see Istana Nurul Iman, the largest residential palace in the world. It is the official residence of His Majesty the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam. Hopefully his Majesty doesn't get lost in its 1788 room or 257 bathrooms. Life is tough, isn't it ? 

 Ping used 2 of the 2007 set of 12 stamps featuring Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah.

Another nice Sabena card compliments of Johan. This card shows a couple of  Sud Aviation Caravelles and an older Sabena jet, perhaps a B707. Long gone are the old days of walking around the ramp to board your aircraft , like shown on the card. 

Johan used another First Day of Issue stamp, this time 1 of the 5 Nature set issued on 15 February 2014. 

I had a couple more cards ready to go, but I think that's enough for this time. Thanks for cards to Parker & Family, Johan, Wang, Ping and Gaisen.

Take care, it's still bitter cold , I'm just going to hunker down for the evening and watch a movie. I think the movie  " 42 " sounds like a good one for tonight. I do like baseball movies. 


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Title Is ----- ??????????

I guess it's time for another update to this log. The Olympics are over so there seems to be time for postcards again. I won't even say how well Canada did , winning Gold in Men's Curling, Women's Curling , Men's Hockey and Women's Hockey, along with other Golds, Silvers, and Bronzes . It wouldn't be right for me to mention that, so I won't. Today's blog will have 2 parts, the first part for regular postcards as always and the second part will be about something that happened last week in aviation. Just something that I want to commemorate here on the blog.

Part I   -  Postcards
My first card for today comes from Ukraine, Odessa in fact. Ukraine has been in the news of late , with many protests , and uprisings, hopefully as I write this , they seem to be working to a resolution of sorts. Many of the protest have been in the capital  Kiev, I'm not sure how things are progressing in Odessa. I always wonder when I receive a postcard from places in the news, how the person who sent it might be doing, whether it's a political uprising, a flood, an earthquake or wildfires, or some other natural disaster.

This card is a view of our Earth as seen from somewhere. Who knows, maybe the space station.

The card actually comes from Nataliya and Julia. They used a number of stamps , the first of which, on the left is a definitive issued in in a set 13 in 2012. The next 2 stamps were also issued in 2012. One is from a Sports set of 4 and the other was a single Costumes issue. The far right stamp is 1 of 4 issued in 2009 for National Songs.

My second card is a great card. It is from a set of GlobalAware cards. The slogan on the card reads "Peace is everyone's business, War is just business. "  Former US President Dwight D. Eisenhower said "I like to believe that people in the long run are going to do more to promote peace than our governments. Indeed, I think that people want peace so much that one of these days governments had better get out of the way and let them have it . " Well Dwight, a lot of people are still waiting .
I'd love to get my hands on a full set of these GlobalAware postcards , so if anyone knows where to pickup a set, be sure to let me know.

Joan who hails from Columbia, Missouri in the US midwest sent this card along. She used a couple of older 6 cent commemoratives , the Alabama and the Leif Erikson issues. There's also the 2007 Silver Coffeepot and the 2008 $1.00 Wisdom Rockefeller Center issue.

Here's a card from Bjelovar, Croatia. Bjelovar is a city of 40,000 +,  located in central Croatia. It's history dates back to 1413. While building a basement in the area, a dugout was found and identified as belonging to the Starcevo Culture ( 5000-4300 BC ) .  

Vesna, who I believe is a reader of this blog sent this card along and used a fine selection of stamps. In the left and right corners we have a beautiful frog stamp from a set of 3 Fauna, Amphibians issued in 2013. Then there are 2 of 5 stamps from the 2008 set of Textile Folk Art issue. Finally, the white and green stamp is from the 2012 set of 3 Spring Flowers.


Next we have a F4U Corsair , an aircraft that was used quite effectively in the Korean conflict. The card is one in a USPS series and depicts a stamp from the 1997 Classic American Aircraft Mini-sheet of 20 which I am happy to have in my collection.

Joe from Endwell, N.Y. is the sender of this card. I have received a number of cards from Joe these past couple of years. The stamps on this one are all relatively old, from the 80s and 90s. The one for the Berlin Airlift was issued in 1998, to mark 50 years. The top right stamp commemorates Rural Free Delivery and was issued in 1996. Interestingly, I have a plaque of an enlargement of this RFD stamp framed on my office wall, honoring US Postal Workers ( not that I am one though ).  The bottom stamps commemorate 50 years of Rural Electrification Administration in 1985 and 50 years of NATO in 1999.

A couple of Primates are featured on my next card received from Rodney, who lives in Clacton-on-sea, Essex, England. I'm not really a fan of monkeys, chimps, apes, or orangutans, or any of those mammals. 
But I do smile when I remember the 1960s TV commercial for Red Rose Tea featuring the Marquis Chimps. Check it out on You Tube, it's a real riot. Let's not forget the expression " Only in Canada, eh ? Pity . " as it related to the Red Rose Tea. And speaking of Clacton, the town was in the news just a couple of weeks ago. ten people were injured in a gas explosion that flattened two houses on a Clacton street. Not a good way to make the news .

Rod used a Blue Machin defunitive along with 2 other stamps . The left stamp was issued in 1981 , and is from a set of 5 Landscapes. This one shows the Glenfinnan Highlands in Scotland. The stamp on the right will be a new addition in my Aviation stamps collection. It is from the Classic Toys set of 5 issued in 2003. Shown is a Meccano Constructor Biplane from the 1930s.Also in this set of stamps is the Dinky Toys.  

I grew up with Meccano Construction Sets and with Dinky Toys. It's quite hard to find either these days , at least in these parts. Lego sets are everywhere and it's Hot Wheels not Dinky , too.

This next card should bring back memories for a lot of you reading. Kids shooting marbles. This shows a Norman Rockwell painting - Marbles Champion 1939, an Oil on Canvas. It was also a Saturday Evening Post cover back on September 2, 1939.

As a kid, I played marbles often, especially at school, during break time. We used to carve out a hole in the ground with our shoe heel to serve as a mott, the place we would try to pitch our marbles into. At the time I didn't know where the term mott came from , but now I know it is most likely because of Charles Mott, a National  Marbles Champion in the United States, in 1942.

Joe from Las Vegas used a number of US Forever stamps on this card. They are from 2011 and 2013.

That's it for my regular cards today. As I mentioned earlier , I have another part to my blog today. This relates to something Aviation related that happen last week. So here it is.

Part II -- Aviation

The very last passenger flight on the iconic Douglas DC-10 departed yesterday from Birmingham , England and was given a water arch salute to mark the special occasion. +This final flight started last Thursday as Bangladesh's National Flag Carrier, Biman Bangladesh Airlines  flew from Dhaka, to Kuwait City and then on to Birmingham.  The first DC-10 to visit Birmingham was on 30 November 1972 when Laker Airways DC-10 G-AZZC made a demo flight for the travel trade. The last DC-10 passenger  flight is Biman's DC-10 S2-ACR. The DC-10 has been flying passengers on commercial flights since 1971, but that run has now come to an end.  It was 43 years ago that the aircraft made its maiden flight with paying passengers when American Airlines flew it between Los Angeles and Chicago on August 5, 1971. 

Here is a postcard of the Laker DC-10 that I mentioned earlier.

Dc-10s were operated by many airlines around the world. Here are a few more postcards of various airlines DC-10 aircraft.
This is Canadian Airlines International, an airline dear to my heart.

Brazil's Varig 

Finland's Finnair

and finally VIASA of Venezuela

There you have it. The End of An Era. So I guess if you were hoping to catch a flight on a DC-10 , let me just say, that boat has sailed, or that train has left the station. They actually sound better than , that flight has taken off , let's just say, you missed her. 
I am happy to say I have flown a number of times on Canadian Airlines DC-10s  from Canada to Honolulu a number of times.Flights I will remember for a long time, now that there are no more.  

Thanks for today's postcards going out to Nataliya and Julia, Joan, Vesna, Joe G, Rodney and Joe again,but not Joe G. Take care , hope I didn't bore you to much with my DC-10 stuff. I just felt it worthy of note. 

What do you think ? and have you flown in a DC-10 ? If so, tell me which airline and from where to where.  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Cruising Thru Postcards 6

It's finally time to cruise thru the postcards mailed during my last cruise. Even though the cruise took place back in late November and early December, the last of the postcards just arrived yesterday. My Lovely Teena and I set sail from Miami, FL on The Carnival Liberty for 7 days in the Western Caribbean. We flew out of Calgary on November 27 to Toronto and overnighted there. Then we flew to Miami and stayed two nights there. We did a few of the touristy things there and even managed to post a number of postcards. Have to say though, Miami is not my favourite city, if I take another cruise out of Florida, it will be from Ft. Lauderdale. The first postcard is of the ship we sailed on- the Carnival Liberty. She is 952 feet in length and takes 2974 passengers. The Liberty was to be our home for 7 days.
Here she is lit up at night.

Of course the only stamp I could come up with was the round Global Forever stamp from 2012 showing the Earth. We've all seen this one before so I won't bother with showing it here.

Then keeping up her tradition , My Lovely Teena managed to pick up a Miami card and get it in the mail to me. Again with the round Global Forever stamp. Teena's card is a view of the Miami downtown skyline at night with the bridge to the port of Miami in the foreground.

We set sail from Miami at 4:00 PM on Saturday Nov 30th, headed for Cozumel, Mexico, our first port of call.  The Carnival Liberty actually docked at the International Cruise Terminal in Puerta Maya, a short distance from downtown Cozumel. It was now 8:00 AM on Monday , December 2nd. I managed to find a number of postcards in Puerta Maya and a small selection of stamps. It was really a poor selection of both. You can see downtown Cozumel with the international pier on my card.

I posted this card on December 2nd, 2013 , but it didn't arrive in my mail box until February 5th, 2014. I always wonder where postcards linger for such long times. I used a large definitive from a set of 12 issued in 2011 to get this card home.

We departed Cozumel at 6:00 PM for Belize City, Belize, arriving there at 9:00 AM on Tuesday, December 3rd. After touring around the city, I located the local Post Office. I wanted to see if I could buy any of the Queen Elizabeth 60th Anniversary stamps form 2012. I get quite tired of the regular stamps that always seem to be offered to locals and tourists. Of course they weren't  available at the post office but the clerk said I should go over to the Philatlic Bureau. Music to my ears. Off I went and yes the stamps I wanted were available. They actually had a pretty good selection of stamps , I was allowed to look through them and I made my purchase, including a nice aviation single stamp souvenir sheet.
My postcard here is a very tranquil beach scene and a few small cabin type structures off shore on stilts.

I used a couple of the Queen's Anniversary stamps on this one. They are from a set of 6. Interesting thing about this card is I wrote it out and posted it on December 3rd, 2013 but it never received its postmark cancellation until February 5th, 2014. It arrived in my mailbox on the 15th of February. Another case of where it's been ?

Here's another card from My Lovely Teena, sent from Belize City. Her card shows St. John's, Belize City's Anglican Cathedral, built in 1812 out of bricks imported from England as ballast. Over the years it has survived many severe hurricanes.

Teena also used 3 of Queen Elizabeth's 60th Anniversary stamps, although different than the ones I used.

We sailed out of Belize City at 6:00 PM that evening. That made for an 8:00 AM arrival at Mahogany Bay, Isla Roatan, Honduras  the morning of December 4th. Spent some time on the beach in Roatan and then shopped around for some souvenirs and postcards and stamps. Purchased some cards and some nice stamps , and prepared the postcards for mailing. I posted 2 cards to myself. This first one is just a southern island scene, palm trees, beach, beach huts and calm water.

I used 2 copies of a 2005 stamp featuring Pope John Paul II. There are 2 stamps in the set.

This card was in really bad shape when it arrived, bent , scrub marks on it and a few small nicks. One of the worst I have received in a long while.

The second card from Roatan shows West Bay beach area, where the coral reef makes it a great place to snorkel. 

The stamp on this one celebrates the Centenary of the death of Honduran poet Juan Ramon Molina in 1908. Again it is 1 of 2 in a set.

We left Roatan at 3:00 PM and set sail  for Georgetown, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. This was our second time in the Cayman Islands and again found it to be a wonderful place. Arrived Georgetown at 10:00 AM. After sightseeing and a little shopping and a dilly bar at Dairy Queen to cool down, I made my way to the post office and went directly to the Philatelic Bureau. I surveyed the available stamps and again purchased some Queen Elizabeth 60th Anniversary stamps along with a few Christmas stamps.

My first Cayman Islands postcard shows the endangered Blue Iguana, which makes its home in Cayman. Sun Bathing in the Cayman Islands, British West Indies. I wonder if he sunburns, changing from blue to red.

Of course I used a couple of the Queen E stamps I found at the Philatelic Bureau. A set of 4 were issued in 2012 and here we see 2 of them.

Here's the last card from the Cruise. It's a 3D card, designed by artist Guy Harvey. He currently maintains his art studio and retail store in the Cayman Islands. His love of the sea is certainly evident on this card. 

Again I used the other 2  Queen E stamps from 2012 along with 1 of a set of 4 Christmas stamps. These Christmas stamps were issued with tabs as is evident  on the one I used. 

We pulled out of Grand Cayman at 6:00 PM and headed north to Miami. After a full sea day on December 6th, we arrived back in Miami at 8:00 AM on December 7th. 

Bus to the airport, and flights back to Toronto and Calgary and we were back to -29 C .What a way to come home. All in all though , it was a wonderful little holiday. We got to see a little of Belize and Honduras, places that we hadn't been and of course the Caymans, what can I say, we love it there. 
Thanks to My Lovely Teena for a wonderful vacation and putting up with my postcard and stamps and post offices addiction .But I really don't want a cure. 

That's it for this time. Thanks for visiting, leave a comment if you have one and are inclined to.  

Friday, February 14, 2014


Yes it's a very Busy weekend and I'm trying to get this update in before something else comes along. Today is Valentine's Day , I 'm taking My Lovely Teena out to dinner this evening. Two grand kids had a sleepover here last evening. I just put up a new Canadian Flag outside to celebrate National Flag of Canada Day tomorrow. Our red and white maple leaf was raised for the first time 49 years ago tomorrow in 1965. Tomorrow there is a birthday party for 2 more grand kids , one celebrating his 8th and one celebrating his 6th. This weekend is a long weekend here in Alberta as Monday is Family Day,  a local holiday. And finally, there is the Olympics, especially now that hockey has started. So getting to postcards has taken a bit of a back door this weekend. But, typing quietly like this may help me get through it .

Let's start with this fine Airline / Aircraft postcard. It's an Air Inter Europe Airbus A300, shown at Paris Orly in March of 1996. Air Inter Europe operated as such between Jan 1996 and April 1997, when it was fully integrated into Air France.

Not only is this a great aviation card , it also arrived with 2 First Day of Issue, 2014 Year of the Horse stamps from France. And special cancellations to boot. All thanks to Jean Pierre.

This second card is again transportation themed , but this time it railway related. Grand Central Terminal in New York City.   Grand Central Terminal is a commuter railroad terminal at 42nd Street and Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City, United States. Built by and named for the New York Central Railway  in the heyday of American long-distance passenger rail travel, it is the largest such facility in the world by number of platforms with 44 serving 67 tracks along them. They are on two levels, both below ground, with 41 tracks on the upper level and 26 on the lower. Although the terminal has been properly called “Grand Central Terminal” since 1913, many people continue to refer to it as “Grand Central Station,” the name of the previous rail station on the same site.

Evelina , a Postcrosser originally from the Ukraine, used a couple stamps that are quite unknown to me. As a regular reader of Linn's Stamp News I usually know what's new in U.S stamps, but have to say that this issue escaped me completely. Next to the Tiffany Lamp definitive from 2007 are 2 stamps from a 2005 mini/sheet of 10 called "To Form A More Perfect Union ", Seeking Equal Rights For African Americans. Also on this mini/sheet are the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. "For in A Real Sense, America is Essentially A Dream . A Dream as Yet Unfulfilled . It is A Dream of A Land Where Men of All Races , of All Nationalities and of All Creeds Can Live Together As Brothers ".  

My next card is of the Lennusadam Seaplane Harbour, part of the Estonian Maritime Museum. The seaplane hangars here  were initially constructed as part of the naval fortress of Peter the Great in 1916-1917. The hangars are the world's first reinforced concrete shell structure.

Here's another picture , along with the prepaid postage that Meelis used to post this card in Rakvere, a town in northern Estonia, 20 km south of the Gulf of Finland. The prepaid  worldwide postage is of an early seaplane, very appropriate for this card's subject matter.

Time is ticking away here, and I have to go to dinner with My Lovely Teena, so it's just one more card for this time. This one comes from Sri Lanka. It is an Antonov An-158, a stretched version of the AN-148. This card shows the aircraft in the livery of Ukraine International Airlines, I believe. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

Fellow postcard blogger Ravindra used a 2010 stamp celebrating Vesak, a holy day observed by Buddhists around the world. This stamp is from a set of 4.

Okay , that does it for this time. Thanks to all for their cards.

Now it's off to Paros On Main with My Lovely Teena for Dinner to celebrate Valentine's.