Friday, January 31, 2014

The Last of January

Well it is the last of January, so with any luck I'll get this one in before tomorrow. My first card is from Belgium. On it are cut away designs of four Imperial Airways aircraft,  The Greatest Air Service in the World, at least that's what is written on the card. From looking at these planes and flying boats, air travel looked like a lot more fun than it does today.

Meelis used 2 stamps from 2012. They are 2 of 10 in a self adhesive booklet of Autumn Tree Leaves.

This next card comes from Russia and features the Smolny Cathedral in Saint Petersburg. It was built between 1748 and 1764.

The card is from a Russian Postcrosser who used a 2012 Sochi Winter Olympic Games stamp . It is 1 of 4 in the set. This one shows Orekhovsky Waterfall , one of the highest and most powerful falls on the Black Sea coast. .

I remember when the Sochi Games were 100 days away, now they are just a week. GO CANADA GO. 

Here's a card with a typical winter scene in Tampere , Finland. 

Another card from a Postcrosser. The stamp used is from a set of 5 self adhesives issued in 2013 featuring Autumn scenes. 

Today's last card is a 1993 photo of Jerry Garcia taken in Indianapolis. Mr Garcia ( 1942-1995) is best known for his lead guitar work, singing and songwriting with the band the Grateful Dead. 

Yu from China, but studying now in the U.S used a bunch of stamps on this one. We have the 2004 Chippendale Chair, the 2008 Tiffany Lamp, the 2003 American Clock and the 2007 American Toleware. Top right is the 2010 Nevada State Flag stamp and bottom right is the 2013 Battle of Lake Erie Forever stamp.

That's it for this time and for January. See you in February.  Thanks to all whose cards I have featured here today.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Yes, Easter Island,,,,,, No , Not Really

Well, I have to say I was certainly fooled by my first card, at least for a moment. I was pleasantly excited when I pulled it out of my post box. Here's what I saw.

Easter Island at last, I thought, but it was not to be. After admiring the 15 moais , I turned the card over and discovered it was "just from Chile ".  99 times out of a hundred , that would be wonderful. But it is a really nice card. Ahu Tongariki is the biggest ceremonial center of all Ahu on Rapa Nui, with 15 moais .  Moai, or mo‘ai, are monolithic human figures carved by the Rapa Nui people from rock on the Chilean Polynesian island of Easter Island between the years 1250 and 1500.

This card is from my brother Dale, who has been a frequent visitor to South America the past couple of years. This card was written in Santiago on New Year's Eve and postmarked on Jan 3rd. Dale used a couple of older stamps here. On the left is a 1993 Christmas stamp, 1 of 2 in a set. The large stamp on the right was issued in 2001 to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of A.H. Cruchaga or Padre Hurtado as he was known in Chile.

Thanks Dale for fooling me so well and for a great card.

My next card is a picture of a prizewinning contest poster for The Century Magazine of 1897.  The Century Magazine was a monthly magazine from 1881 until 1930. This card arrived from Australia.

Louise used 2 stamps on her card. The Bird stamp is from a 2013 set of 4. The Airbus A380 stamp is also from a set of 4 issued in 2008. This is a beautiful set , especially the 50 cent Supper Connie.

Now for a card showing the Abbesses in Paris.
Abbesses is a station on the Paris Métro Line 12, in the Montmartre district . Abbesses is one of the few deep stations of the Paris Métro, at 36 metres below ground, as it is located on the western side of the butte of Montmartre.

This is a card from Dominique and he used a 2013 stamp commemorating the 100 th running of the Tour de France. It is 1 of 8 stamps in a beautiful souvenir sheet.

A new addition to my Airlines/Aircraft on Postcards Collection is featured next. It's  a  Korean Air B747.

 It might be a Korean Air plane but the card arrived from Kiev, Ukraine. Alex used 3 Flowers and Plants definitives on his card.

Speaking of the Ukraine, I'm sure all readers are aware of the protests and demonstrations  currently going on in that country. I certainly hope Alex and all are safe and their president comes to his senses soon so the good folks in Ukraine can go back to a normal and democratic life .

Today's final card  comes from Anna , a university student in Jackson , Mississippi, U.S.A. She sent this smaller than average card showing just the wing of a  jet aircraft. A unique view, nonetheless.

Anna used two stamps from 2013. A Ginger Bread House Forever stamp and a definitive Apple stamp. Not the greatest of stamp themes for sure. I find it rather bizarre  that a country would issue such stamps when there are hundreds of better things, people, inventions, organizations, events, anniversaries, places, buildings   and hundreds of others that should be showcased on a country's stamps  to give the world a look at that country. A ginger bread house and an apple , it just boggles my mind. ( And I'm not just referring to the USA , it 's all countries, Canada included ) . What do you think ? Let me know by leaving a comment. 
Oh yes, the stamps. 

 So ends another update. Thanks for cards go to Alex, Dominique, Louise, Anna and Dale. Drop by again soon. Take care.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Cards From All Over

Hello again. Here we go with another update of Gem's World Postcards. Today's cards are from all over. And where might all over be ? How about Madagascar, Wallis & Futuna, Zimbabwe, Finland, USA, Russia, and France. I think that qualifies as all over.

Let's start with the card from Madagascar. It's not everyday that you find a card from Madagascar in your mailbox. It's even better when it's a complete surprise, as this one was. The front of the card  shows a flower market , I believe , perhaps in Antananarivo.

Tsilavina R sent this card along. Perhaps a new follower of this blog, I really don't know. Tsilavina if you want, please drop me an email at so I can properly thank you for this card. The stamp was issued in 2012 and that's all I have been able to find out about it. It does have something though, to do with Jean Laborde 1805-1878. He was an adventurer and early industrialist in Madagascar, having been shipwrecked ther in 1831 .

My next card shows Faioa Island, an uninhabited island , part of Wallis and Futuna in the South Pacific.
Looks like a nice little place to get away from it all and take in a little sun, sand and water for a few days.

Jean Pierre used 2 large stamps on this one. Postmarked Mata-Utu, the capital. The one on the left was issued in 2013 and celebrates 20 Years of the State School. The other stamp is from a 2011 set of 3 Bird stamp.

Today's 3rd card comes from Zimbabwe, but the garden featured on the card is the Denzhe Mukula Garden Project in Limpopo, the northernmost province of South Africa. Limpopo borders Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Members of the Limpopo community shared the dream of unearthing wealth from the earth. They formed the Denzhe Mukula Project , planting cabbages, spinach, beetroot and carrots.Pictured on the front are a few of the locals working in their garden.


Bruce used a 2005 R rate Bird definitive stamp on this one. It is from a set of 10.

Near the bottom , on the back of this card there is a nice slogan, quite appropriate for us postcarders.
It reads : Spread the Word. Send a postcard. Reconnect and Inspire. Doesn't that sound good for postcarders ?

Royalty is up next. It's Danish Royalty but the postcard is from Finland.  On the card we see HRH Mary the Crown Princess and HRH Frederik the Crown Prince and heir apparent to the throne of Denmark. They make a lovely couple unlike some other Royals around the world.

Minna used 1 of the Finnish Postcrossing stamps on this card. They were issued as a set of 4 back in 2013. As a stamp collector I am glad to have this stamp, I'm glad to receive any stamp , but personally I do not like this stamp issue. I made that quite clear back in May of 2013 on the Postcrossing site when their design was announced. It seemed to me that many Postcrossers just jumped on the band wagon because they were Postcrossing stamps. I guess I'm no bandwagoneer   , here is what I wrote on Postcrossing back last May.
"I applaud the idea of the stamps, I applaud the Finnish Post Office for issuing Postcrossing stamps, but not wanting to rain on anyone's parade, I have to say the stamps themselves are anything but nice. Reminds me of amateur hour, they are so like children's stickers, very childish in design, and no where near what a real stamp should look like. Another wasted opportunity for a beautiful stamp for a beautiful purpose."
What do you think, Ugly or not ?  Leave a comment , vote or whatever.  
Of note: The Netherlands issued the first Postcrossing stamps, followed by Finland and now , just a few days ago, Belarus.
I'm not going to get to all the cards planned for this time, four cards is good though. Thanks to Tsilavina, Jean Pierre, Bruce and Minna. I'm hoping for a little feedback today. Don't be shy. 
See you back here soon.   

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Gabon ---- New Country # 260

It's been a long time, no not since my last update, a long time since I have received a card from a new country. My last one was the Republic of the Congo which I received back on Aug 14th of 2013. Today I received a card from Gabon, country or stamp issuing entity # 260 of my collection. Gabon is a country of 1.5 million , located on the west coast of central Africa , on the equator. It is bordered by Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, and the Gulf of Guinea. It's capital is Libreville and that is where this card was postmarked.

The cards shows a bridge across the 1200 km long Ogooue River at Lambarene, Gabon. Lambarene is a city of 24,000, located 75 km south of the equator. It is also where the Albert Schweitzer Hospital was established in 1913 by Mr Schweitzer, himself.


Matt of the blog Postcards of Africa, Islands and Exotic Locales sent this card along. Matt was also the sender of that last new country card last August. You can see his blog  here . Matt's stamp was issued in 2013 and commemorates the Centennial of the Albert Schweitzer Hospital at Lambarene.

It's really good to be able to cross another country off the list, even if I don't actually have a list there on the left anymore. I had a list but it kind of got messed up ( I kind of messed it up ) , so I removed it. I do think though that it's time I named the outstanding countries that I still need a card from. Central African Republic, Congo ( Dem Rep) , Djibouti, Guineau, Gineau-Bissau, Liberia, Sierre Leone, South Sudan.  
A couple of places in the Pacific- Penrhyn Island, Tokelau Islands and Niuafo 'ou. 

And a final few others  - Western Sahara, Australian Antarctic Territory, Transiestra and Grenada- Carriacou & Petite Martinique. 
So there it is , not exactly a long list anymore but a  fairly difficult one none the less.

I have a couple of other cards which I have received in the past week of so.  Here's one showing Santa in Brighton. 

Johan used a couple of 2013 Christmas stamps on this one. These 2 Belgium stamps were issued as self- adhesives.
Be sure to check out Johan's postcard blog called "Johan Postcards ". Find it here .

This next card is from the U.S., Bedford Falls Station, Seneca Falls, N.Y. in fact.  It's a Christmas greetings postcard from Joe G.  Joe specially requested this special handstamp cancel of Bedford Falls Station.
Bedford Falls is the fictional town in which the American Christmas drama "It's a Wonderful Life "was set back in 1946.

Joe used the International Christmas Evergreen Wreath stamp, another Global Forever stamp , issued Oct 24th 2013.

That brings me to the end of another update. Thanks to Johan, Joe and Matt for their cards.

Take care and leave a comment if you have one. Be back again soon.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

2014's First

We are only 4 days into the new year, I hope all is going well for everyone. It really is winter here, it's -23 degrees as I type this and with windchill it feels like -32 . Snow everywhere, I have to shovel everyday. But we are a northern country , it's not like these conditions are unknown to us.

Here's some postcards to warn up with. First up is a card from Moldova. I haven't  received many cards from this country. This one here makes just four . The first 3 all had a picture of old Soviet buildings , so this colorful bird is a welcome change.

Svetlana used a couple of nice stamps. On the left is a 2012 stamp, from a set of 4 entitled History. This one shows a medieval soldier. The stamp on the right is 1 of 2 in a Joint Issue with Kazakhstan. It was issued in 2008 and shows a Maral or Deer.

My next card comes from Shanghai, China and gives us a look at the Lujiazui Finance & Trade Zone  along the Huangpu River.

Susan used a great selection of stamps. On the far left and on the far right are 2 stamps of a set of 4 featuring Dai Architecture. They were issued in 1998. The white and blue stamp was issued in 2012 , 1 of 4 issued for the London Olympics. The other stamp is from 2003 and shown Tiananmen or the Gate of Heavenly Peace.

It's getting late so I think I'll call it a day with just these two cards. Thanks to Susan and Svetlana for the cards. I will be back again soon. Take care.