Saturday, April 2, 2016

April Already

Hello April and hello to you all . It's another month , March really flew by, at least for me. But it was a good month, postcard wise. I received 35 cards during March. Now it's on to April, I can only hope for another 35 cards.
For today, I have a number of great cards to have a look at. Let's start with this hockey related card. It's an older Soviet Union , prepaid postage hockey card. The sender, Vladimir, saw fit to use all hockey related stamps, including 2 older Soviet Union stamps and 2 recent Russia stamps.
Here's the card.

The card is basically blank except for the stamps. The only picture on it is the goaltender showing his stuff in the upper left corner. Perhaps it was meant to be Vladislav Tretiak, one of the greatest goaltenders of all time.
Now let's have a look at those hockey stamps. Bottom left is a 2014 stamp issued to celebrate Russia as the 2014 Ice Hockey Champions. Top right is the Soviet Union prepaid postage. It celebrated the 1979 victory of the Soviet team in the World Hockey Championship that year. Under this prepaid postage , on the left , is a 2013 stamp from the set of 5 Olympic Sport Legends. It shows Alexander Ragulin., a great player who was on 3 Olympic Gold Medal teams and 10 World Championship teams. Ragulin was a key Russian player in the 1972 Summit Series. His main job in that series was to try and handle Canada's  Phil Esposito, not an easy task for any player.
I have many memories , good and bad , of that 8 game series, the series of the century, as it became known.
Canada won the series 4 games to 3 games with 1 game tied. It was a tough series in which  Team Canada had to comeback and win the last 3 games in Moscow. Harry Sinden, the coach of Team Canada , said       " The Russians gave us a lesson that the whole country of Canada won't forget for a long time ".   How true, hockey has never been the same.

There was one more stamp , located on the back of the card, where Vladimir wrote his comments. It was issued by the Soviet Union for the 1960 8th Winter Olympic Games in Squaw Valley, California. Here it is.

That's a lot of hockey, hopefully someone out there likes the game.

Before I get to the next card, I want to give a shout-out to Postcrossing. On Friday, March 31st this postcard sending and receiving website reached  another of its milestones.  35,000,000 postcards received by its members since it started operations on July 14th, 2005 . Those 35 million cards travelled 176.4 Billion kms. Postcrossing has 616,479 members in 211 countries. Not too bad for something that has remained FREE for all 10.5 years. If anyone reads this and is new to postcard collecting , just check out - - you'll most likely get hooked like the other 616,479 members.

Now back to postcards.This next one arrived from Wegberg, Germany. It shows Emilia Clarke in her role of Daenerys Targaryen, Princess of House Targaryen. She is also known as Khaleesi on Game of Thrones, which premieres its sixth season later this month . I can just hear her say " When my dragons are grown, we will make waste of armies and burn cities to the ground ". This is my first Game of Thrones card, but there are quite a few out there. I'm sure they'd make a great collection, with all the different characters.

Michaela sent this card and used a number of stamps. Three are the normal Flower definitives and the larger one on the right is a 2010 stamp issued for Harvest Festival.

I have a number of cards , all from Malaysia and all sent by Jean Pierre . This first one shows Mulu National Park. A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000, Mulu National Park, located in Sarawak encompasses caves in a mountainous equatorial rainforest. The area includes the world's largest cave chamber. it is 700 m long, 396 m wide and at least 70 m high. It has been said that the chamber is so big that it could accommodate about 40 Boeing 747s, without overlapping their wings. Now that's a postcard to see.
Jean Pierre's card gives a look at the limestone pinnacles of Mount Api and Deer Cave, the largest cave system in the world.

  Jean Pierre used a recent stamp, one issued Feb 3rd of this year. It is part of the Traditional Dancers series and shows a special postmark First Day of Issue cancellation.

Next I have a glamour shot of Marilyn Monroe. Many collectors out there collect Marilyn postcards. Marilyn was an American actress and model who became one of the most popular sex symbols of the 1950s.

Alice who hails from Brodeaux sent this card . She used a couple of definitives along with a nice stamp from 2015. It celebrated Stamp Fest and showcased the Tango. That stamp brings back memories of March 2012. My Lovely Teena and I were enjoying a cold one in a cafe in Caminito, Argentina and watched 2 locals performing the Tango.

Here's another of Jean Pierre's cards from Malaysia. This one gives an early view of Masjid Jamek and then a current view of the area. Masjid Jamek is located where two rivers, the Kland and the Gombak, meet. This is a historical site where the first settlers landed in Kuala Lumpur. The mosque in both views is the oldest in the city, dating back to 1909.

Jean Pierre used a good aviation relation stamp from 2014. It is 1 of a set of 4 issued highlighting the Main Terminal Building, Klia2, Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

Card # 6 arrived from The Hague, Netherlands. Franca wrote that she found the card in a small shop in Stockholm last summer. I'm glad she did. " Beyond Retro " cards are  high quality photography inspired cards by independent artists and designers from around the world.

Franca used a 2014 International Rate Priority Windmill stamp.

Here's the 3rd Malaysia card sent by Jean Pierre. It's the Royal Barge, as it glides past the Royal Palace towards the Temple of Dawn.

The stamp on this card is really outstanding. When viewed really close up , it is almost like the building is painted on the stamp. Also , when viewed under an ultra-violet lamp, there are semicircular marks visable on the building.  The stamp was issued March 14th and commemorates the centenary of Ananta Samagom Throne Hall. It received a first Day of Issue with a special cancellation in the shape of the building on the stamp.

I think that's it for today. Seven cards , more than my usual compliment of six. Got a little carried away, I guess.  Thanks to Vladimir, Michaela, Alice, Franca and Big Thanks to Jean Pierre.

Any comments or thoughts - I welcome them.

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