Postcards from Turkey

These bunch of postcards arrived in the mail just a week after my father-in-law’s mega holiday in Turkey in September.  He and his travel companion enjoyed their tremendously.  From Istanbul where they stayed for a few days, they traveled to Kuşadası, Ephesus, then to Fethiye to explore the ancient ruins and majestic temples, the local bazaars and food, the lovely beaches, and just soaking in local culture as much as they can (and as long as their legs could take them!).

Postcards galore!
Postcards galore!

I’m so happy with the gesture and I appreciate that he took time to buy me these postcards.

Merhaba and teşekkür ederim, Dad!

Breaking out of the blogging doldrums

I feel like this from time to time; perhaps several times a year. It can be difficult to get out of this funk when all I want to do is just laze around the house.

I  was excited when Postcrossing published an interview featuring the creator of Lali cards. I was compelled out of my doldrums to blog about it because — Lali cards.

You see, I never owned any Lali card but I’m such a big fan! Which is a shame, to be honest. I want them but couldn’t get them anywhere here in Phnom Penh or other Asian countries.  Apparently, Lali cards are only available in certain European countries. *insert a sad face here*

Don’t know what a Lali card is? Well, you must have been living under a rock! Lali card designs are like normal cards only that it has riddles on them. The designs are playful, vibrant, whimsical and appeal to people of all ages. As I’ve said, every card  has a riddle written in front that needs to be solved. They’re in French but they’re a lot of fun even for non-French speakers like me. Every card design has fantastic details – I can only hope to draw like this!

Postcrossing has done a wonderful feature about Lali.It was nice getting to know the person behind these most-desired cards in their Postcrossing profiles. Hers is a story of heart, passion, and of course, hard work. How wonderful it was to read about her beginnings,  an affirmation that dreams do come true. That is, through hard work, perseverance, a burning passion, and a little dash of luck, too. Such an inspiration to girls and boys out there who are nurturing similar dreams.

To mark this occasion, Lali and Postcrossing joined together to give a chance to Postcrossing members to win – not one – but a whole set of Lali cards! How great was that? Of course, I had to join. I felt that lady luck was whispering in my ear so I dropped my name and comment there. I felt so giddy at the little voice in my head telling me that it would be awesome to win the Lali cards of my dreams.

And here’s an update:

Two weeks or so passed after that,  I opened an email from Postcrossing and — lo and behold! I read the most pleasant news evah! Ana told me that I was among the three Postcrossing members who have won the Lali cards giveaway. I was so happy I almost did cartwheels if not for my pet dogs blocking  my way, lol.

So just to humble-brag a bit, let me show you my  precious Lali cards.

My precious Lali cards! Some of them are going to be sent to dear family and friends :)
My precious Lali cards! Some of them are going to be sent to dear family and friends 🙂

I also have to mention the lovely handwritten note from the Postcrossing team 🙂 Thank you, Postcrossing! Thank you, Lali!

Postcard Friendship Friday: Knitting sheep

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I really wanted to post something related to Beth’s theme but my scanner boinked for the nth time. So I’m posting this instead:

How adorable and zen-looking is this knitting-sheep?
How adorable and zen-looking is this knitting-sheep?

The year 2015 is the year of the sheep (or goat, depending on who you ask). This is a special New Year greeting postcard featuring an adorable, adorable knitting sheep surrounded by sakuras (cherry blossoms)!I have to thank my good friend, Clarissa, at Kizuna – Ties and Bonds of Love, for this lovely postcard. She’s one of the few people I met through blogging whose friendship I treasure. I may not update my blog regularly, or check my Facebook account to leave messages for her, but she never fails to surprise me with little things, like sending me postcards. She also knows that I love making things – I crochet and I began learning how to knit recently. Hence, this postcard.

One of the things I treasure the most are the friendships I’ve made – whether virtual or in real life. Friendships don’t come easily – it takes time and effort to build it. I am incredibly fortunate to have met friends who treat me the same 🙂 To Beth, and all my friends, thanks for the continuing friendship. Enjoy your weekend.

Postcard Friendship Friday: Mgarr Harbour

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Howdy, PFF friends!
It’s been a while, I know. Sorry for the long absence.

I have some many postcards worthy of posts but I could not find time to post them.
Now that I found a good system to balance my time, here I am again joining the PFF fun!

Here’s a postcard sent from Malta. It was sent through a swap I arranged from a postcard collector on Facebook. He was having a holiday there and offered postcards to those interested. Of course, I grabbed the opportunity.

Mgarr Harbour, Gozo, Malta
Mgarr Harbour, Gozo, Malta

The beautiful Mgarr Harbour is the gateway to Gozo.
According to an online article, Mgarr Harbour is bustling with activity due to the increase in the number of vessels using the facilities there. The harbour has a very scenic view – with verdant hills, cliffs and valleys overlooking the beautiful quay. Warehouses, stores, garages, and fishermen sheds are located right in the port and the broad square-like wharf is located at the foot of the hill.

To this day, Mgarr harbour is still the most important fishing base and provides the best winter shelter for the island’s fishing boats, while the adjacent marina hosts pleasure sea craft throughout he year.

Midweek Mails: Postcards for 12-12-12

Now I can finally rest my right arm, take out the djarum from my husband’s stash and pretend to smoke it to celebrate the 20th postcard I finished writing tonight. Why the fuss? Well, writing postcards non-stop is NO joke! Also, tomorrow is December 12, 2012. That means 12-12-12, an auspicious date for some peope (especially to get married) and a once-in-a-lifetime event that most postcards and stamps collector are looking forward to.

So first thing in the morning tomorrow, this lot will be delivered, by yours truly, to the Post Office.

Hello, World! These postcards will be on their way to their destinations tomorrow.  I also have one packet going out to that nice lady in Poland.
Hello, World! These postcards will be on their way to their destinations tomorrow.  I also have one packet going out to that nice lady in Poland.

I don’t know how much all these cost – and I dare not to think about it – but still I’m happy to be able to send them out. They’re for friends who have been really good to me, sending me postcards and stuff without being prompted to. Most of them don’t know they’ll be receiving a postcard with the unique “12-12-12” postmark so… ssshhhh. This is going to fun! 🙂 I just hope that the Post Office won’t mess things up! Even if it means that I queue for a long time at the PO I will do so just to get a nice, clear hand stamp.

I find it fun when it comes to choosing a postcard that would best fit the person I’m sending it to. Besides reading their profiles, I also put myself in the shoes of the receiver with the main thought in my mind: would I be excited to receive this postcard? Only then I’d pick the card if the answer is positive. I’m a chatty person so it is no surprise that I’ve got a lot written on the back of the postcard, hah!

If you’re from the Philippines, Japan, Singapore, the USA, Netherlands, Croatia, Italy, Poland, France, Isle of Man, Macedonia and Romania (gah, that was a long list!) and have been in constant communication with me, then one of these is yours. I wish I could send all of those who approached me for one but I am really sorry that I could not for budgetary reasons.

Postcard Perfect 055: The Return of the King of Clay

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It’s been a long while since I last participated here at Postcard Perfect. But, as always, I make sure to come back whenever I can. Great thing that today isn’t as busy as it was in the past months.

Everyone’s busy making their wishlist now. I’m one of them. You know what I’ve been meaning to buy for myself? What’s on top of my list is a brand new speaker stands. And why you might ask? Well, it’s only 35 days to go before the Australian Open… aaaaand… it’s because this guy is coming back to the professional tennis tour after being sidelined for many months due to injury…

Muchas gracias mi querida. Rafa es el mejor tenista!
Muchas gracias mi querida. Rafa es el mejor tenista!

Rafael Nadal. More than six months of being off court, I sure wouldn’t want to watch his much-anticipated comeback match only to be marred by a lousy sound system. This a Touchnote card sent to me by mi querida Ana. And you know how we both love seeing Rafa like this – smiling, relaxed, oh-so-guapo!  And don’t get me started on that dimples!

Postcard Friendship Friday 081: Oxumaré and the rainbow flag

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Has anyone heard about the Fairy Hobmother? Several blogs I visited last week have been talking about this fairy who visits blogs from all over the world and grants their wish. In the beginning, I was doubtful about his (yes, this fairy is a HE!) existence but when I learned of his visit to a friend’s blog here in the Penh – wow! I became a believer instantly. I hope he’d visit me, too. I have a long wishlist 🙂 Don’t worry, dear Fairy Hobmother, they’re all not expensive. They’re just stuff I need for crafting that are not found here. I’m not asking for tablets, smartphones or sterling silver jewelry – but, of course, if the Fairy Hobmother gives any of those to me, who am I to refuse? *wink*

While I wait for the fairy’s visit, here’s my entry for this week.

Oxumare-Brazil-s-rainbow-serpent

Oxumaré (O-Shoo-Ma-Ray) is  the mythical rainbow serpent deity in the Candomblé, an Afro-Brazilian religion practiced mainly in Brazil (and other neighbouring countries). This practice originated mainly in Salvador, the capital of the popular Bahia region.In Candomblé, many Gods are worshiped each with their own special powers and for specific reasons. These Gods are known as Orishas or deities and represent certain things. Each Orisha has a specific power; they have individual skills, personalities and rituals. The Orishas have different things that symbolize their powers. People who practiceCandomblé believe that each person has their own Orish and that Orisha control his or her destiny and acts as a protector.

It is believed that Orishas represent a certain force of nature and are connected to certain foods, colors, animals, material goods, and days of the week. A person’s Orisha can be decided by their personality and character. There are Orishas for everything and are found everywhere, from hospitals to homes.  – Source

Oxumaré contributes to the cycle of life and fertility which is why one of the minor symbols of the orishá is an umbilical cord, the connection to the supernatural. Those who practice Candomblé do not kill snakes because of the relation to Oxumaré.According to this site, Oxumaré is very much associated with sexual fluidity, especially in Candomblé that draw on Umbanda. Oxumaré is sometimes said to have the power to turn individuals homosexual and/or change their gender. The writer went on to explain that Oxumaré’s rainbow as a symbol related to same-sex attraction preceded the modern Gay movement’s rainbow flag.

Candomblé was brought from Africa to Brazil between the 16th-19th century, about the time when the Portuguese brought African slaves to the Americas. It was religion borne out of the attempts made  by the enslaved Africans to recreate their culture thousands of miles away from their homeland.

Obrigada, Fernanda!

Postcard Friendship Friday 079: Monkeys at Angkor Thom gate

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It’s been awhile since I last posted at Postcard Friendship Friday and I feel bad for being so. Fridays just come in and out so quickly. So I’m making it up this week.

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A Cambodian friend gave this postcard to me as her “Christmas present” to me on my first year in Cambodia. Immediately after our office Christmas party, I set out to Siem Reap with some of my colleagues to see Angkor Wat for the first time. On our second day, while on our way to Bayon Temple, we passed by dozens of monkeys playing along the southern portion of the Angkor Thom gate grounds.

Angkor Thom means the “Great City” and, according to the Wikipedia, it is the last and most enduring capital city of the Khmer empire. The city was built towards the end of the 12th century and is renowned for its beautiful temple grounds and the fantastic southern gate.

The sight of passing vehicles excited the monkeys that one of them jumped right on the hood. Much to my surprise, I spilled my drink on the spanking clean dodge seat covers of our rented car. Lol. I am so scared of monkeys, big and small,  and every time I see this postcard I am reminded of that incident.

Midweek Mails: Bound for USA and Romania

This post was supposed to be posted every Wednesday, or midweek, as the post title says. However, I had some urgent errands and work that needed to be done so posting had to take a backseat. Plus, I had to take care of the spams in my mailbox(es). Have you seen a t ball trophy and would you like one? Or, are you looking for luxury brand of bags? Here’s more interesting – someone wants to share their inheritance money with me and all it takes is for me to send them my passport details and bank account number to get the money. How convenient, isn’t it? The spam mails do get automatically deleted after one month but, looking at the state of my spam folders, I got to empty them already. I do find enjoyment reading selected ones before deleting them. There’s a feeling of relief after seeing an empty folder!

Now, on to my main topic. Sent these four postcards today to folks in Romania and the USA:

I hope these postcards reach the recipients. Lately, my outgoing postcards just vanished to somewhere  other than its intended destination.
I hope these postcards reach the recipients. Lately, my outgoing postcards just vanished to somewhere  other than its intended destination.

It’s been a disappointing two months for me as I learned that most of the postcards I sent out weren’t received by the recipients. How could that be? Where does the problem occur – here?  So please let me know if I had arranged to swap with you and hasn’t received anything yet. I have no other way of knowing except the feedback coming from you.

Before I sign off, I would like to shout out to a fellow Postcrosser who is based in Netherlands. Edith, thank you for your very nice email. I look forward to hearing more from you!

Soundtripping

Today is October 9, and the whole postal world is celebrating the Postal Day. So to my friends out there, happy World Post Day!  For sure there’ll be lots of activities in other parts of the world to mark this occasion. Sadly, our Post Office is quiet, so nothing much to talk about.

A friend and I were chatting on Facebook over the kind of music we used to listen to in the 80s and the 90s. Oh, we had fun enumerating them one  by one, laughing while recounting stories, funny or otherwise, that go with the songs.

geisha playing traditional Japanese flute shakuhachi.img

We started our chat with a link to a Japanese traditional folk music (and then branched out to the 80s, 90s, and the new millennium). I have an eclectic taste in music that extends to traditional, folk types. In my opinion, the Japanese folk music is very nice and relaxing! However, I may like them but I have really no ear to discern what types of instruments are used, lol. I do know that the shakuhachi is Japanese flute that’s used in folk music and is traditionally made of bamboo. Wow, who would’ve known bamboos could create great music! I’ve seen one when I visited a museum in Tokyo back in the mid 2000s and it looks just like any other piccolo. Here’s a postcard I saw on ebay showing two geishas playing the shakuhachi. I want one for myself. The postcard, I mean.