Saturday, March 30, 2013

007: Dr.No

I got this awesome postcard with an awesome Christmas stamp (you can't appreciate it but it's shiny!) from Russia.

The card is a reproduction of the 1962 poster for the first James Bond movie: Dr. No
The movie was based on the novel of the same name written by Ian Fleming and was directed by Terence Young, James Bond was portrayed by (the very handsome) Sean Connery.

On the movie James Bond (007) is Britain's top agent and is on a exciting mission, to solve the mysterious murder of a fellow agent. The task sends him to Jamaica, where he joins forces with Quarrel and a loyal CIA agent, Feliz Leiter. While dodging tarantulas, "fire breathing dragons", femme fatales and a trio of assassins, known as the three blind mice. Bond meets up with the beautiful Honey Ryder and goes face to face with the evil Dr. No

And as I like to do with movie cards, here's the trailer of the film:

Spasibo Natasha!

Barcelona postcrossing meet-up!

On February 10 of this year there was a Postcrossing meet-up in Barcelona and some of my spanish friends were there along Paulo and Ana (the bosses of Postcrossing!!!) so I got this beautiful card with the signatures of some spanish postcrossers plus Paulo & Ana as a lovely surprise courtesy from my awesome friend Marta who always sends me surprises that make my day.

On the card we can see Barcelona's Cathedral.

Barcelona Cathedral (also known as La Seu) is a celebrated example of Catalan Gothic architecture dating from the 14th century. Its graceful spires can be seen from throughtout the Gotic quarter of Barcelona. 
The elevated site occupied by the cathedral has always been the spiritual center of Barcelona. First it was a Roman temple, then a Mosque and then a church, it's construction began in 1298 and was completed in 1448.
The crypth beneath the high altar contains the sarcophagus of Santa Eulalia, patroness of the cathedral and co-patroness of the city.
Probably the best part of the cathedral is the 14th-century cloister, which historian Cirici called "the loveliest oasis in Barcelona". Its vaulted galleries overlook a lush garden filled with orange, medlar and palm trees and a mossy central pond. Unusually the cloister is home to a gaggle of white geese whose ancestors have lived here for five centuries, how they originally arrived remains a mystery and various legends have it that they represent the virginity of St. Eulalia or the former splendor of Rome.
On the northern side is the chapter house, which contains a small museum of religious artifacts. 
An elevator ride to the roof provides a fine view of Gothic Barcelona.

Muchísimas gracias Marta!

Rio Tietê

This lovely card came from Brazil and it made quite a journey...It took exactly 207 days to get to me!
According to the postmarks, it left Brazil on August 20 and for some reason it was sent to Venezuela and it left on Septermber 5 then it was sent to another country (I can't read the postmark because it's almost erased) and then it finally came here! 

On the picture we can see Tietê river (Rio Tietê in portuguese), this is a Brazilian river in the state of Sao Paulo.

The source is in Salesópolis in the Serra do Mar, at 1,120 m altitude. Although the source is at most 22 kilometers from the coast, the escarpment of the Serra do Mar forces it to run in the opposite direction, to the interior, going through the state of Sao Paulo from southeast to northwest till it runs into the artificial lake formed by Eng Souza Dias (Jupiá) dam on the Paraná river, in the municipality of Três Lagoas, about 50 km from the city of Pereira Barreto.
The name Tietê was registered for the first time on a map published in 1748 by d'Anville. The name means "the truthful river" or "thruthful waters" in Tupi (a native language of Brazil).

Obrigado André!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

My most special postcard ♥

As you can tell from the title this is my most special postcard. Why?
Well because it was the first postcard I ever received, I got it when I was two years old and it was from my dad. He was working in Brazil at that time so he thought sending me a postcard would be a cool idea (and it was!) it's funny because he wrote: "This is the first postcard you'll get from abroad", maybe he knew I was intended to become a postcard lover/freak/collector years after ;)
And is not only special because of this little story but because eventually it triggered my love towards postcards, obviously when I got it I was too small to understand the concept but my mom kept it for me and when she gave it back when I was about seven, I became fascinated with the idea of being able to send this pretty pieces of paper (that came with pretty stamps and post marks) from any country in the world to another.
And I planned to post this yesterday because as you can see this card got postmarked on March 26 1995 so that would have been a celebration of 17 years but well it's the celebration of 17 years + 1 day now ;)

So that's the emotional story behind it now a little info about vibrant Rio:

Rio de Janeiro is the second largest city in Brazil, on the South Atlantic coast. Rio is famous for its breathtaking landscape, its laidback beach culture and its annual carnival.
The harbour of Rio de Janeiro is comprised of a unique entry from the ocean that makes it appear to be the mouth of a river. Additionally, the harbor is surrounded by spectacular geographic features including Sugar Loaf mountain at 395 meters (1,296 feet), Corcovado Peak at 704 meters (2,310 feet), and the hills of Tijuca at 1,021 meters (3,350 feet). These features work together to collectively make the harbor one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World).
Rio de Janeiro will host many of the 2014 FIFA World Cup games, including the final, and the 2016 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. 

Muchísisisimas gracias papi! (:

Madrid from The Netherlands

Well as the title says I got this Madrid card from The Netherlands, even tough this is not the first card from another country I get I thought it was pretty curious and I think the stamps are awesome! I really like them, also this card came with a really cool quote: "It is better to light a candle than to curse darkness"
Dank Nolleke! 


This lovely card came from my swap buddy Marie, the card itself is great and it brings back a bunch of nice memories from a trip I made to Canada 3 years ago, it has really cool stamps and even a cool postmark! It's from Saint-Valentin's post office which is quite famous, you can read a bit more about it and the Love post office in Saskatchewan here 

Ottawa is the capital of Canada. The city is situated along the Ontario side of the Ottawa River, is currently the fourth largest city in Canada, and the second largest in Ontario after Toronto. 
Unique as a North American capital, the city is bilingual. English is the first language of a majority of the population, but French is the first language of a significant number. Staff in most stores and restaurants speak both well and, in general, bilingualism is common.
Today, the major economic sectors are the public service, travel and tourism and the high-tech industry. Ottawa has proudly remained a green city and is situated at the confluence of three rivers (Ottawa, Rideau and Gatineau) as well as the Rideau canal. Many national attractions are located in Ottawa: Parliament Hill; the National Library and Archives; the National Gallery; as well as the Museums of Civilization, Contemporary Photography, Nature, War and Science & Technology.

Thank you Marie! 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

London 2012: Taekwondo

Another great card with a matching stamp from lovely Nat!

The back of the card reads: 
The Olympic and Paralympic games (Taekwondo) 
Reproduced from a stamp designed by Studio David Hillman and featuring artwork by James Fryer.

I really loved the 2012 Olympic games so any card from the event is just great for me

Thank you so much Nat!

Corner from Taiwan

I got card from Taiwan and I really like it, it's quite simple but I like this type of photography. It was taken by a taiwanese photographer called Yuyen who has a really cool series of taiwanese photography
You can check it out here

Xie xie Wei Yi! 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Snail-mailers around the globe: Spain

After a short break, here's the third interview and we have Arianne who is venezuelan but lives in Spain right now. I met her via the Postcrossing forum and it's been great to get to know her because she's really cool and really nice. 

In what snail-mailing activities do you take part? 
Postcard swapping. 

How did you became a snail-mailer?
I discovered a friend from El Salvador was swapping postcards. She uploaded to Facebook a lot of beautiful images of those postcards, so I asked her about them and she explained to me what Postcrossing is and then I decided to register on the website. 

For how long have you been doing this?
A year and a half.

Can you show three of your favorite postcards and make a little explanation on why you like them?

My very first postcard from Postcrossing. It came from Poland, but it took so long that I believed I was never going to receive my first postcard. The sender explained to me that he asked for the address and then forgot to send my card. Weeks later he realized this and sent it, 50 days later I found the postcard in my mail-box. 

Another special postcard from the official website. It's from Nepal, the most exotic country I've received so far... and the sender was a little girl. 

Last but not least , I'm a huge fan of manga and anime since I was a child. Saint Seiya (Also known as Knights of the Zodiac/ Los Caballeros del Zodiaco) is one of my favorite anime series of all times, and one day a girl from the Postcrossing forum saw my avatar (which was one of the characters of this series) and she wrote me a u2u (message) because she is a fan too, but she's from the very own country of Saint Seiya: Japan, waaaaaa! We had long conversations via u2u about the series and other anime and manga, we swapped some postcards and she sent me this one. I could barely believe it when I saw the postcard in my hands.

How much does it cost to send a postcard in your country?
Through Spain it's 0.37 , to Europe 0.75 € and to the rest of the world 0.90 
But every year the postal rate increases 1 cent (inner rate) and 5 cents (the other two), so in two years we'll be paying 1 € to send a single postcard outside of Europe.

In fact, those rates are for 20 grams, that means I can send three regular postcards in an envelope for the same price as a single postcard stamped.  

Do you have any theme collections? If you do, why are you collecting them?
I'm not a big collector, but there are certain postcards that I like more for no particular reason. Those postcards are lighthouses, dragons, fairies, angels, butterflies, anime/manga and Hello Kitty.
It's weird because when I started in Postcrossing I didn't know that I was going to like lighthouses or Hello Kitty that much, but here I am now collecting them.  

If you are into pen-paling, from which countries do you have pen-pals from?
In the past (like 10 years ago) I used to write greeting cards for birthdays and Christmas to some fellow friends that I made on internet forums. Most of them live in your country (Mexico) and others in Argentina, but right now I'm not writing to anyone.  

Have you discovered any destination you'd like to travel to thanks to a postcard?
Not yet, but I'm afraid that some day I'll receive a lovely postcard from some amazing place in the world and I will never rest until I go there.
However in my first visit to The Netherlands something really weird happened to me. I was in Den Haag (The Haag/La Haya) visiting the Parliament and I saw the Ridderzaal (The Knight's hall) and it was like a deja-vu because weeks before that I had received a postcard with that building on it but I didn't knew where it was located. 

Please share a few facts about other countries you've learned thanks to postcards or letters:

  • My address includes a "ñ" so I realized that in all the postcards I receive from countries with cyrillic alphabet they write with a different character instead the ñ, I think it's related with the codification they use in their computers. 
  • I've learned that some countries have "Poste restante" on their post offices, that way people who are moving to another place or maybe going on vacation can receive all their mail in certain post office if they write Poste restante and the address of that office on the mail. 

A few fun/strange/surprising facts you'd like to share about your country?
Spain is not my homeland, I wasn't born here. I moved from Venezuela to Spain five years ago but one of the things I enjoy the most of Spain is the great culture they have around food and spending time with family or friends around the table talking about sports, politics, gossip, etc. It's amazing. 
Also I love the "siesta". Siesta is an institution in Spain and it's the time you use after lunch to take a nap for 20 or 30 minutes.  

In your opinion, what is it that makes sending postcards and letters through snail-mail special?
To me is special because in this time of fast technologies developing, writing by hand sounds like something anachronistic. It's not the same as writing an e-mail, at least I need to be in the right mood to write. It's like a ritual to me to find the mood and then sit to write using different colored pens.
I think we aren't special because we are writing by hand but because we are keeping alive "ancient" ways of communication. Also I love to see different types of handwritings from all over the world.

Muchísimas gracias Arianne!


"La Danse" (The Dance) by Fernando Botero

I really like art postcards!
Danke Betty!


This card was a really lovely surprise since Titanic (the real ship) is one of my biggest obsessions so the movie obviously is one of my favorites even tough I'm not really into romantic films.
I think pretty much everyone has seen this movie at least once so instead of giving information about it I'll leave one of the trailers.

Arigato Taroh! 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Gorski Kotar

This is a very cool postcard because the top is actually a book mark you can tear off and I really love the stamp and the dog sticker that got the postmark :P

Gorski Kotar (English: Mountain District) is the mountainous region in Croatia between Karlovac and Rijeka. Together with Likaand the Ogulin-Plaški valley it forms Mountainous Croatia. Because 63% of its surface is forested it is popularly called: "The green lungs of Croatia" or "Croatian Switzerland". Through the region passes the European route E65, which connects Budapest and Zagreb with the Adriatic Port of Rijeka.

Hvala Antonella!


A card from Manila, Philippines along some really colorful stamps! 
Manila is the capital of the Philippines and the nation's center of education, business, and transportation.
Manila has a reputation as a congested, polluted concrete jungle, and is often overlooked as a mere stopover for travelers aiming to reach other Philippine provinces or islands. To an extent this reputation is deserved, but Manila is nevertheless rapidly developing and has its own rich history and experiences to offer. The city is sprawling, bustling, and culturally complicated, with a colorful multi-cultural heritage and varied nightlife.
It is often described as the only capital city in Asia that’s not an Orientalist's dream. A foreigner may be surprised that a local looks just like any Asian, but wears mostly T-shirt and jeans, can speak fluent English, reads and writes in Roman text and is not at home with chopsticks. As we now see it, Manila is more modern and western judging from the steel and glass skyscrapers dotting the skyline and the old spanish architecture.

Thank you Marie!

New year in Costa Rica

This is another fun card from Shirley, it says "In Costa Rica we don't celebrate with wine, we celebrate with pineapple juice". 
It came along with some nice stamps and a little costa rican pineapple (:

Gracias Shirley! 

Year of the snake

I got this card on January and as you can see it has New year greetings and this year is the year of the snake in the chinese calendar. 
This 2013 year of the Snake is meant for steady progress and attention to detail. The Snake is the sixth sign of the Chinese Zodiac, which consists of 12 Animal Signs. It is the enigmatic, intuitive, introspective, refined and collected of the Animals Signs. Ancient Chinese wisdom says a Snake in the house is a good omen because it means that your family will not starve.
People born in the Year of the Snake are reputed to be thoughtful and wise and to approach problems rationally and logically, seldom instinctively. Such people are complex beings, they are clever and people of few words from their birth.

Thank you Julie!


Really nice colorful stamps and an awesome postmark! 

This is a really cool card from Jokhang Monastery in Tibet. 
Entering Tibet you feel as though you've entered an entirely different world. The traditional Tibetan culture, though heavily diluted recently by government-sponsored migrations of Han and Hui Chinese, remains strong.
Tibet spans the world's largest and, with average heights of over 4,000 m, also the world's highest plateau, consequently Tibet is often referred to as the "Roof of the World". Parts of the region (northwestern region) are so remote they remain uninhabited to this day.
Tourism to Tibet is strictly controlled by the Chinese government. As of 2009, the previous "backpacker" tours, which included the permit and a couple of nights stay in Lhasa is no longer an option and all travelers must stay with an organized trip the entire time they are in Tibet. That means you will not be allowed to travel on an independent basis and you will be presented Tibet from an official Han Chinese government sponsored perspective.

Xie xie Peter!

Monday, March 11, 2013


Sweden is the largest of the Nordic countries, it borders Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark via the bridge of Öresund. The Baltic Sea lies to the east of Sweden, as well as the Gulf of Bothnia, which separates Sweden from most of Finland. The northernmost part of Sweden belongs to the Artic.  

Sweden is a developed post-industrial society with an advanced welfare state. The standard of living and life expectancy rank among the highest in the world.
Sweden has a strong tradition of being an open, yet discreet country. Citizens sometimes appear to be quite reserved at first, but once they get to know who they are dealing with, they'll be as warm and friendly as you'd wish.
Sweden is great for outdoor life - skiing, skating, hiking, canoeing, cycling, sailing and horse-riding, depending on season and big cities such as Stockholm and Göteborg have great night life and shopping. 

Tack Katya!  


Alava is one of the provinces that make up the Basque country in Spain, Vitoria-Gasteiz is it's capital. 
Vitoria-Gasteiz itself is a very small city. Virtually everything you will want to see is reachable on foot. The city has an ancient town center where most of the streets still have the medieval name of the jobs that was used to be in each one of the streets (Herrería, Zapatería...) In the Town Center you can find the Cathedral of Santa María, that is one of the most important attractions of Vitoria-Gasteiz.
Situated in the south of the Basque Country, Vitoria-Gasteiz is a city without sea. To the North, at only 66 km is the city of Bilbao, and at 114 km the beautiful city of San Sebastian. 
Vitoria-Gasteiz has been the political capital of the Basques since the 20th May 1980.

Gracias Natalia!