Thursday, June 9, 2016

Barbados

In honour of this blog's sixth birthday, a blast from the past! This card from the archives was sent to me by my Mum when my postcard collection was really in its infancy, just a handful of cards tacked up to my bedroom wall. My Mum, well-travelled lady that she is, has contributed considerably to my collection, and I can never thank her enough for taking time out of her holidays to track down stamps, cards and errant post offices to indulge my postcard folly. Merci bien, maman!

Card shows Harrismith Beach on the southeast coast of Barbados.

Stamp on the left commemorates the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Barbados Museum in 1933. Stamp on the right from the 1989 definitive set of 16 features Centrosema virginianum, or wild pea, a common vine throughout most of the Americas.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Turkey

Postcard showing Sultan Ahmed Mosque and the Sea of Marmara beyond. It was built between 1609 and 1619 by Sultan Ahmet I, who decided to build a large mosque in Istanbul to reassert Ottoman power following losses in Central Europe and Persia. It incorporates some Byzantine Christian elements of the neighboring Hagia Sophia with traditional Islamic architecture and is considered to be the last great mosque of the classical period. Part of the Historic Areas of Istanbul World Heritage site. Many thanks and teşekkürler to my Mum for sending this to me while on holiday.

Stamp on the left is the 1998 definitive of Kemal Atatürk, seen as the founder of modern Turkey (and a first-rate Dracula impersonator, by the looks of it). Stamp on the right is from a 2000 set of four about crocuses, and features the snow crocus, Crocus chrysanthus. It is native to Turkey and the Balkans and flowers very early in the spring, often pushing up through the snow.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Malta

Multiview postcard of Malta, showing the country's namesake Maltese Cross, the harbour of capital city Valetta, with fortifications forming part of the City of Valletta World Heritage site, and some traditional wooden fishing boats. Thank you and grazzi ħafna to friend Sam who went to Malta to visit relatives.

Stamps are from a 2002 set of four on endangered species, showing seahorses of the Mediterranean. Shown are the long-snouted seahorse, Hippocampus guttulatus, and the short-snouted seahorse, Hippocampus hippocampus, both of which live in the waters around Malta.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Ross Dependency

My second attempt at getting a card from Ross Dependency, with a pretty spectac payoff with this card of an explorer from the 1910–1913 Antarctic Expedition sledding past a glacier in front of Mount Erebus. Mount Erebus is the most southerly volcano in the world and, despite it’s remote location, is regularly studied by the nearby McMurdo and Scott research stations on nearby Ross Island.

This completes my collection of Antarctic postal agencies. It's the first complete continent in my collection! Perhaps not the greatest feat when there are just four postal agencies for the continent (Australian Antarctic Territory, British Antarctic Territory, French Antarctic and Southern Lands, Ross Dependency), but my first continent nonetheless! :-)

Quite interestingly for avid postcards nerds like myself, it would seem that the postcard actually did make it all the way to Antarctica, judging by all the extra expedition stamps that made it on to the card. — Ross Dependency is New Zealand’s Antarctic territory. In the past, Ross Dependency post was all processed in Christchurch, on mainland New Zealand, and was never sent for processing in Antarctica. Even if the mail was actually send from an Antarctic research base, post was sent to Christchurch (and cancellation stamps would say “Christchurch”). Now, the cancellation says “Ross Dependency” and has come along with stamps from New Zealand’s Scott Base. Colour me one happy postcard camper!

Georgia

Postcard of Tbilisi city centre, capital of Georgia, a country that shouldn't have been that hard to add into to collection – I've had Armenia and Azerbaijan for years – but has eluded me until now. Many thanks and მადლობა to friend Andy who was in Georgia on holiday. Card shows a part of the Tbilisi Historic District site on Georgia's Tentative List for World Heritage, and the undulating green Bridge of Peace that links the old and new parts of the city.

Stamp is from the 2012 Europa series promoting tourism and features the Gergeti Glacier on Mount Kazbek, one of the highest in the Caucasus Range.