Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Snail-mailers around the globe: Portugal

More Snail-mailers are sharing their experiences with us! This time we have Rita from Portugal, a super sweet traveller that answered to my call looking for interviewees to participate here, she shares with us some fun stories and facts from different countries, check it out!

In what snail-mailing activities do you take part?
Penpalling and postcard swapping.

How did you became a snail-mailer? 
I was talking with a friend from Belarus about my postcard collection and he told me about Postcrossing and since then I’ve been an active member in the postcard exchange activity.
For how long have you been doing this? 
I’ve travelled since I can remember and from each trip I’d bring some postcards with me, but it's been only a year since I started exchanging postcards. I also exchange postcards with my friends, for example, when we go on holidays.

Can you show me 3 of your favorite postcards and make a little explanation on why you like them? 

This postcard has a huge meaning for me. It was sent by my 6th grade Portuguese teacher, one of my favourite teachers, when she went on her honeymoon. 

I bought this postcard in 2000 when I went to Santa Park in Finland, where we saw Santa. For many years I thought that Santa was real, I mean he was just in front of me! I also had a great time there. I feel so nostalgic when I look at it.

This one has a funny story. Also in 2000 I went to Sweden with my family. My dad arrives to the car, gives me this postcard and says “Hey Rita I bought this postcard of you.” Being innocent as I was (6 years at that time) I really thought this was me (impossible!) I resembled so much to the person on the card.

How much does it cost to send a postcard in your country? 
For Europe it costs 0.70 euro cents (0.60 for Spain) and for the rest of the world it's 0.80 euro cents (up to 20 grams). 

Do you have any themed collections? If you do, why are you collecting them? 
I collect mostly multiview touristic cards but I also like other topics like postcards related to my favorite films and series for example.

If you are into pen-paling, from which countries do you have pen-pals from? 
That’s a good question! Well I have many penpals hehe, they are from: Canada, Macedonia, Sweden, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Belarus, among others.    

Have you discovered any destination you'd like to travel to thanks to a postcard? 
Oh gosh, I've fell in love with so many places! I discovered the beauty of the Middle East, specially Saudi Arabia. I would also like to go to Papua, New Guinea and Trinidad and Tobago. Romania and Bulgaria are definitely on my top 10!

Please share a few facts about other countries you've learned thanks to postcards or letters:
  • That the Hajj is the largest regular human gathering worldwide, receiving around 5 million muslims.
  • Borobudur is the biggest Buddhist temple, it has 1460 relief panels and 504 effigies of Buddha.
  • Temple Bar is one of the most visited sites in Ireland.
  • The dutch word for "pancake" changes every year.

A few fun/strange/surprising facts you'd like to share about your country? 
  • In the XV and XVI centuries, Portugal was one of the riches countries in the world, due to the maritime exploitation of the Indic Ocean.
  • We are known for our wine and our Mediterranean diet.
  • There's a huge arabic influence in our country, most of the words beginning with Al- are from arabic origins, as well as words related to agricuture (Almeida, Almada and laranja).
  • In summer we enjoy eating snails.   

In your opinion, what is it that makes sending postcards and letters through snail-mail special?
Snail-mail gave me the chance to meet wonderful people and learn about their lifestyle and country. Some of them even turned out to be my best friends. It is such a good feeling to receive postcards and see the beauty of other countries, when sometimes we don’t have the chance to go to those places. I like all the process that it's involved, choosing the card, writing on it, hear the reaction of the receiver and seeing another one in my mailbox! 

Obrigada Rita!

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