Monday, April 28, 2014

A No Planes. No Trains, No Transport Update

If you've arrived here today looking for planes, trains or auto, buses, etc , then you've come to the wrong place. I'll have none of that today. But hang in there and see if something strikes your fancy.

My first card for today is from Finland and on it we can see a young snowboarder having a great time. Snowboarding became a Winter Olympic sport in 1998 in Nagano, Japan. Canadian Ross Rebagliati won the men's giant slalom and became the first athlete to win a Gold Medal in snowboarding.

Marja used 1 of 6 train stamps in a 2012 self adhesive booklet, celebrating 150 Years of Railways.


Next we have a card from Ukraine. On the card you can see a woman dressed in a National Ukrainian Dress from the 17th-18th century.


Oliya used 2 copies of a definitive from a 2012 set of 13 Trees and Fruits.

Hopefully this next card might put us all in the mood for summer. Greetings from Eforie. Eforie is a town and a holiday resort on the Black Sea shore, in Constanţa County, Romania. It is located about 14 kilometers south of Constanţa.

Suzana's  choice of stamp is a Flower & Clock stamp from the 2013 set of 6.

An oil on canvas in the State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg is shown on this next card. The painting is called "Catherine the Great, Arbiter, at the Temple of the Goddess of Justice. The painting is by Demitry Levitski and was painted in 1783.  Yekaterina Alexeevna or Catherine II, also known as Catherine the Great, was the most renowned and the longest-ruling female leader of Russia, reigning from 9 July 1762 until her death in 1796 at the age of sixty-seven.

 Yelena who lives in St. Petersburg used a couple of Animal definitives from 2008 along with an Architecture definitive from 2009. Then there is the triangle stamp from 2013. It is 1 of a set of 4. 

This next card is the final one for today. It gives us a look at the Tomb of Confucius, or at least the gate to the tomb . Confucius lived in China between 551 and 479 BC, during an era that is referred to as the 'Spring and Autumn' period of Chinese history. He was born to middle class parents in Lu State – an area surrounding the modern day city of Qufu, in China's Shandong Province.

This is a card with prepaid postage already printed on the card. The prepaid postage shows the exact same picture as is printed on the front of the card. I guess to make up postage for an international rate, Gao used a nice Bird/Wildlife stamp from 2000. It is from a set of 10.

There you have it, another 5 cards today. Thanks go to Oliya, Marja, Suzana, Yelena and Gao for the cards. Hope to get one more update in for this month if all goes well. Look forward to have you drop by again . Take care. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

A Couple of Choice Cards

Welcome back to Gem's World Postcards. Today's postcards all have a Transportation theme- planes, trains, motorcoaches or airports. If this is not your cup of tea today, please come back again soon, as my next update will certainly be different from today's. So let's get to it.

First up is this card from South Africa. It shows ZS-AFA, a Junkers JU52 flying over Johannesburg City. This aircraft was built in 1954 and originally operated by the Spanish Air Force. It's first commercial flight was on November 1, 1986. The flight was a local flight around Johannesburg and operated for 50 minuets with 14 passengers. 

Bruce used 2 round stamps from a set of 5 self adhesives issued in a 2013 sheet highlighting South Africa's Post Office Achievements.


My next card depicts Sao Paulo International Airport ( GRU ) . In Brazil the airport was ranked 1st in terms of transported passengers, aircraft operations, and cargo handled in 2012, placing it as the busiest airport in Latin America by passenger traffic (36,000,000 in 2013).

Jean Pierre posted this card on the 18th of  March after a late flight arrival from Paris. I only received it 2 days ago, on April the 25th. That's over a month from Brazil, sometimes I wonder at the mail systems of the world. Jean Pierre's stamp is from a 2013 sheet of 5 celebrating cooperation between Germany and Brazil.

I also showed the Air Mail sticker from Brazil, as I know there are collectors of those out there. Enjoy.

Here's Air Berlin, Your Airline, or so the card says. It's D-ABXB, an Airbus A330-223. This airplane has been flying since Jan 18th, 2000 and has flown as Sabena, Lifthansa and SwissAir before Air Berlin. Flying in an Airbus 330 is still on my bucket list, maybe someday.


Now this card arrived from Romania as a surprise, and surprises are just great. I have too thank Danut who lives in Ploiesti for this great card. Danut has his own postcard blog called "World, Come To My Home " and you can check it out  here .  He has some great cards from great places. And, he used 2 great stamps from 2013. The one on the left is from a set of 4 celebrating Healthy Foods. The stamp on the right is 1 of 2 from an Europa set commemorating Postal Transport. A great stamp for my Aviation Stamp Collection.The card too, and the earlier one from Bruce get added to my Aircraft/Airline Postcards Collection.

I promised a train earlier and now here it is . It's the Super Hokuto Express  from Japan.  This express train started operating between Sapporo and Hakodate in 1994. It is operated by the Hokkaido Railway Company.

It's great to get a train card and it's even better when that card arrives with a train stamp as this one did. The same can be said for a plane postcard when it arrives with a plane stamp, as the one from Danut did. Just makes my day. Miyoko used a stamp that was issued in 2010. It is 1 of 10 in a Tourism issue showing Travel Scenes of Chiba.

Here's the last card for today. it is a double-decker motorcoach of the Kowloon Motor Bus Company in Hong Kong. In December 2012, Kowloon Motor Bus has a fleet of 3,807 buses including 3,634 double-deckers and the bus fleet is fully air-conditioned.

KH used 3 of the large 2006 Birds  issue along with a larger stamp from 2013. It is 1 of 6 celebrating Chinese and Western Wedding Customs.

That brings to a close another Gem's Postcards update. Thanks for cards going out to Bruce, Jean Pierre, Danut, Miyoko and KH. All great cards with great stamps. Be sure to drop by again soon. Thanks for reading and drop a comment here if you have something to say.

Monday, April 21, 2014

The No Titled Post

Hello again postcard lovers. Today I have another fine helping of postcards from all around. My first card is from Portland, OR, U.S.A. but shows a scene of Denali National Park in Alaska. It's a Cessna !85 , belonging to K2Aviation, on wheels and skies flying over a side valley of Kahiltna Glacier with the South face of Mt. Mckinley in the background.

Francis loaded this card up with a fine bunch of stamps. Starting on the left is 1 of 2 stamps issued to commemorate the Apollo Soyuz Space Project back in 1975. It was a joint issue with the Soviet Union. Just below is a 1976 stamp celebrating 50 Years of Commercial Aviation. Then there are 2 stamps from 1978 highlighting  Capt. James Cook 's travels to Alaska and Hawaii. In the top right are 3 stamps from 1976 commemorating the U.S. Bicentennial. Finally we have 3 definitives including the A Rate Eagle stamp from 1978, the Navajo Jewelry issue from 2006 and the American Clock from 2003. Ten stamps in all, that's enough to qualify as a mini U.S. collection in itself.

Francis has a fine postcard blog called "the-geo-nerd" which you can find right here.

Back on March 22nd I showed a card of the Penny, B.C. Post Office. Well today it's the Longworth, B.C. Post Office. The building styles look like they are the worth of the same "architect".    Longworth is a community located between Sinclair Mills and Penny on the north bank of the Fraser River in central British Columbia. Via Rail's Jasper – Prince Rupert train calls at the Longworth railway station.

Angie used 1 of the 5 Canadian Pride Flag Use stamps issued in 2013.

Here's a card from Luxembourg showing a series of just book spines and titles. Not a lot to say about this one, other than I don't receive many cards from there.

Frank used a 2011 stamp celebrating the 90th birthday of Grand Duke jean of Luxembourg. 
He reigned from 1964 to 2000. He is the father of the current ruler, Grand Duke Henri, and the son of Grand Duchess Charlotte and Prince Felix of Bourbon-Parma.

Now for a card from Ukraine. It shows a hand holding an alarm clock. You know what they say about clocks - even a broken one is right twice a day. This one says it's twenty after ten, I just hope that's not symbolic for Ukraine, I really hope time isn't running out for them. 

Elena used a nice selection of stamps on her card .  On the top left is an Easter stamp , on the top right a Christmas stamp , both from 2013. The middle stamp is titled My Beautiful Ukraine , issued in 2012. 
Lastly is a Fruit and Tree definitive from the 2012 set of 13. 

A large multi view card from Iceland is up next. It's the last card for today. Iceland is one of those countries from which I haven't received all that many cards . Lots to see on this card including a map, waterfalls, street scenes and a city view. Also in the center of the card is the Sun Voyager. Sun Voyager is a sculpture by Jon Gunnar Arnason  (1931 - 1989). Sun Voyager is a dreamboat, an ode to the sun. It is a common misunderstanding that Sun Voyager is a Viking ship. It is quite understandable that many tourists think  this when travelling in Iceland. Nonetheless,  this was not the original intention.

Stefan, who lives in the capital Reykjavik is quite the postcarder. He has a number of Postcrossing accounts and all are quite heavily  used. His stamp is a 2013 Europa issue featuring  Postal Transport. It is from a set of 2.

 There you have it, another update . Thanks to Elena, Frank, Angie, Francis and Stefan for their cards. Drop by again soon. Take care.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Snowy Day Post

Yes, as the title above implies , it's another snowy day here in southern Alberta. It snowed yesterday, it's been snowing all day today, and it's snowing now today, as heavy as any time this past winter. It's truly a winter wonderland out there. Beautiful but  I've already shoveled the drive and walk once today, I'm sure I'll have to do it again later. Enough about that, let's move on to a great snowy day activity -- postcards.

My first postcard for this time comes from Santa Ana , California, a place where I'm sure it's not snowing today. The card says "the locals are friendly " but be careful in the water. I believe that's Goofy in the water with Mickey , acting as a lifeguard in the top right corner.

  Yes, this card is from The Magic Kingdom. My grandson Evan and my granddaughter Ryann were lucky enough to spend some time in California a short time ago, along with their parents. So a postcard to Pop and Nan was high on the agenda.  The card arrived with 3 of 4 of the Flags For All Seasons , Forever stamps issued in 2013.

Up next is another great card for my Airline / Aircraft Postcard Collection. A Boeing 747-200 is an excellent addition. This one is in Lufthansa livery. Aircraft D-ABYY was the first 747 to wear Lufthansa's new colours back in '89. This aircraft also saw service with German Cargo Airline and Lufthansa Cargo. It was finally sold to Southern Air in Aug of 2000.

Meelis used 2 nice stamps from 2013. Both are Views stamp, one a beach sunset and the other a mountains view.

My third card is of Lille, France. On the card is the Opera building  to the right and the Chamber of Commerce Building on the left.  Lille is a city in the North of France. It is the principal city of the Lille Métropole, the fourth-largest metropolitan area in France after those of Paris, Lyon and Marseille. The city is  situated in French Flanders,   near France's border with Belgium. 

Dominique , who was a recent visitor to Lille sent this card. He used a 2013 stamp featuring French politician Gaston Doumergue ( 1863-1937 ) .

Here's a card of a retro railway poster from the 1920's promoting trips to the Belgian coast. La Panne
 is the most western town of Belgium on the North Sea  before the French border. It's a resort area with a wide beach and where yachting is quite popular. 

Monique used 2 stamps, one from 2013 and the other from 1963. The stamp on the left is 51 years old and commemorates the 40th Anniversary of SABENA, the Belgian Airline. The stamp shows a Sabena Sud Aviation Caravelle, and I can say that's an airplane type that I have flown on with TAP Airlines of Portugal. . The other stamp is 1 of 5 issued to celebrate Belgian Chocolate. 

That's a great stamp for my Aviation Stamp Collection.

It's still snowing heavy here, so this card will give you some idea what it's looks like outside my window, minus the streetcar of course. The card comes from Jamsa in central Finland, but shows a streetcar in Helsinki, the capital. 


Anni used a recent 2014 stamp , issued  March 3rd to honor Finland's two gold medalists at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games. They are cross country skiers Sami Jauhojarvi and Livo Niskanen. The non denominated first-class stamp shows them holding their gold medals. 

I was going to show one more card but I will save it for the next time. That's all for today. Thanks going out to Anni, Monique, Dominique, Meelis and of course Evan and Ryann. Great cards all around. Any Comments ? 

Oh yes, Happy Easter to all who celebrate. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Card # 3500 and More

It's been a week since my late update.Time to get back in the saddle and talk postcards. My first card for today is the 3500th card I have received since I started collecting way back on March 9, 2006. This card arrived on April 9th from Romania. That's 3500 postcards in 2953 days, just a little over  8 years. That's 3500 postcards from Postcrossing participation, swaps, requests and other unsolicited arrivals.   The card is entitled "Return to the Village " and shows a number of men returning home after a hard day working  in the forests in the Bucovina region of Romania. Bukovina is a historical region in Central Europe, currently divided between Ukraine and Romania. The photo is by and copyrighted to Marius Vasiliu. He is a fellow Postcrosser and I have secured his permission to use his picture here. Marius wrote that he loves the old rural way of life and that is quite obvious when looking at his pictures.

The 4 Flowers & Clocks stamps that Marius used are from 12 issued in 2013. 

Next is a lighthouse card for all the lighthouse enthusiasts out there. This one is San Diego Light and it is located Cape San Diego.
Cape San Diego  is  located in Gongliao District, New Taipei City, Taiwan . The cape is the easternmost point of the main Taiwan island, and also the easternmost cape of Taiwan.

Jerry used 3 quite recent stamps on his card. On the left is 1 of 4 Fruit stamps issued in 2013. On the top right is a Lighthouse stamp from a 2014 set of 4. The bottom right stamp , is also from a 2014 set of 4 , featuring Corals.

Here's a card for all the legmen out there, or perhaps it's for the antique telephone collectors or just for the lamp lovers. Take your pick, all I know is that's it's a Hallmark card from the Netherlands.


Hester's stamp choice was a 2013 self adhesive definitive featuring King Willem-Alexander.


A day in retirement might be the subject of this next card. What better way is there to spend a day than casting out a line and wishing you might bring home supper ?

Kate used a nice selection of stamps. The large Whale stamp was issued in 2012 and is from a set of 2. Just a beautiful stamp , this one. The right stamp on the top was issued in 2004 and is 1 of 3 in a set called Ladies & Horses. Lastly, the small definitive is from a set of 15 Animals issued in 2008.

Rolling in through the snow next is a Blue Train from Russia. The card comes from Tyumen. Tyumen is the largest city and the administrative center of Tyumen Oblast, Russia, located on the Tura River 2,500 kilometers east of Moscow. Tyumen was the first Russian settlement in Siberia. Founded in 1586 , the city has remained one of the most important industrial and economic centers east of the Ural Mountains.

Darja's stamps include 1 of 5 in a minisheet of Olympic Sports Legends from Russia. This particular one features Evgeny Grishin, the famous speed skater. The stamp on top right was issued in a souvenir sheet of 3 and highlights Tzarskoe Selo Palace. It was issued in 2006.

   Now for a little pin - up. This little lady talking on the phone came all the way from Moscow.

Daria used a 2014 Olympic stamp featuring Luge.

I have just one more card for today. What better way to end than with a nice Airline / Aircraft postcard. This one features an Aeroflot Yak 42. The Yakovlev Yak-42 is a 100/120-seat three-engined mid-range passenger jet. It was designed as a replacement for several obsolete Aeroflot jets as a mid-range passenger jet. As of 24 November 2011, a total of 91 Yakovlev Yak-42 aircraft remain in airline service. The Yak 42 is a lot like a Hawker Siddeley Trident or a Boeing 727 or even a Tupolev Tu-154.

Interestingly, this Aeroflot Yak 42 didn't fly in from Moscow, or even Russia , but originated in Finland.   So we have a Finnish stamp. Katia used a Country Life self adhesive from 2010. It is from a booklet of 5. 

At that, I'll call it a day. Thanks go out to Marius, Jerry, Hester, Kate, Darja, Daria and Katia for their great cards and stamps. Take care, be sure to check back soon .