The sights of Toronto!

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Was running errands again earlier this morning. There was some kind of emergency at home and I had to get the stuff needed to repair a busted water pipe. I hate going out unplanned, it disrupts my routine. I so wish there are on-call handymen to do the fixing stuff at home. You know, just like the toronto bathroom renovations or repair team that are available 24-7. But I digress now.

Of course, I took the opportunity to visit the Post Office again to check if I have postcards in my mailbox. Nada. But that’s okay, at least, I was able to go out of the house, had coffee and a bit of fresh air to keep things off my mind. 

Here’s the postcard for today, a postcard from a nice, 28-year old dude from Toronto, Canada:

The sights of Toronto. I love that apart from the various Toronto landmarks, included in the postcard is the familiar maple leaf and red-and-white colours of the Canadian flag.

Toronto is the largest city in Canada with five million people living in this multi-cultural and friendly city. It is also home to the CN Tower, the second highest tower in the whole world.

Looking at the postcard I can only imagine the vibrant city and the people of different backgrounds and culture who migrated to this country. With the influx of migrants, the demand for housing, rental or owned, must be high that there is also a high demand for work for toronto contractors. I am saying this because the sender has indicated that he works in the construction industry, basically handling toronto home additions in the company where he is working.


Brooklyn Bridge of New York

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Here’s another postcard sent by my padangat Jaja who was recently in the Big Apple for a quick holiday with her husband. I’m so envious of the two of you – always on holiday ^.^ 

That’s it – I will find a job soon! Any kind of job, you know. Even those Datawarehouse Designer Jobs that I am least qualified or not exactly my expertise but will take anyway so I can finance my travel plans. Desperate much? lol.

But I digress.

The beautiful panoramic view of Brooklyn Bridge and the Lower Manhattan, in the background.

Built between 1869 and 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States of America. The bridge connects Manhattan to New York’s most populous borough of Brooklyn, and is considered as one of the most magnificent landmarks in New York. 
The moving force behind the construction of the bridge was a German immigrant, Joe Roebling, who worked with the Prussian government as a bridge and road builder. It was said that the idea of building a bridge across the East River came about when the ferry he was on got stuck on ice. He didn’t live long enough to see the bridge completed though. Twenty other workers died while working on the bridge. (Source)

Postcard Perfect 023: Ciudad de Mexico

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Postcard Perfect New


Postcard du su semana vino todo el camino de México.
  This is the first postcard I received from Mexico sent by my very dear friend Luisito who, despite our distance (he is in Caracas, Venezuela), has constantly been in touch with me all these years.  He actually sent me an envelope full of postcards he purchased (all for me, of course) while he was on holiday in Mexico, HK, and France. I thought he also included the Halloween invitations he was planning to send me, hihihi. I apologise, it’s a private joke between us.

 

Anyways, on to the postcard:

 

postcard from Mexico 
The postcard shows the iconic landmark El Ángel de la Independencia, or The Angel of Independence, right in the heart of downtown Mexico City. Commonly called El Ángel , it is officially known as Columna de la Independencia. It is basically a victory column  based in the centre of a roundabout along Paseo de la Reforma constructed commemorate the centennial of the beginning of Mexico’s War of Independence, celebrated in 1910. Crowning the column is a statue of Nike, the Greek goddess of victory, which was made of bronze and covered in 24k gold. In later years it was made into a mausoleum for the most important heroes of that war. At the base of the column the names of celebrated Mexican heroes are featured. More details about the El Ángel features here.

 

El Ángel de la Independencia is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Mexico City, and it has become a focal point for both celebration or protest. (Source: Wikipedia)

 

Muchas gracias, mi querido Luis. Besos y abrazos.

 

P.S. Update. The Royal Souvenir Giveaway  by Postcard Perfect is already closed and winners have  already been announced. Check out the page (click the badge in the beginning of this post) to see if you are in the winners list. Congratulations to all the winners!

Postcard Friendship Friday 031: The scenic Yosemite National Park

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Oh, what a bummer – it’s already Friday night and I just remembered I haven’t posted my PFF entry today. I was skimming through the dozens of laptop reviews earlier and I got lost track of time.  Here it is, a vintage postcard of Yosemite National Park in California. It shows the breath-taking view of Yosemite from the Inspiration Point. I think this is one of the most photographed views of the park and the one that visitors could never forget.

 

 

This postcard was sent by Ralph, of Maryland USA. He took his family to Yosemite National Park in January and they all enjoyed their stay there.

Yosemite National Park lies in the heart of California. With its ‘hanging’ valleys, many waterfalls, cirque lakes, polished domes, moraines and U-shaped valleys, it provides an excellent overview of all kinds of granite relief fashioned by glaciation. At 600–4,000 m, a great variety of flora and fauna can also be found here. Designated as a World Heritage Site in 1984.

   (Source: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/308)

Sunday Stamps 014: Poets: They who have a way with words

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I must say that this week’s entry was another challenge but I’m glad I have found several stamps. Let’s begin with the only woman in the group. So lucky to have found a woman 😀

Julia de Burgos

 

 

The renowned Puerto Rican poet Julia de Burgos, who has won fame after dying nameless on the streets of East Harlem in 1953 at the age of 39, [is being] was honored with a U.S. stamp last year.

The stamp was dedicated in a ceremony in Puerto Rico… and became available at post offices across the country and online, said Roy Betts, a spokesman for the U.S. Postal Service.

It features a portrait of the poet with blue water flowing in the background. The water evokes one of her best-known poems, "Rio Grande de Loza," a sensuous ode to a river in Puerto Rico on which banks she was raised.

Source: NYDailyNews.com

Cesare Pavese

“We do not remember days, we remember moments…”

 

The stamp was issued by the Poste Italiane in 2008  to commemorate the centenary of the birth of Cesare Pavese (1908-1950). It features a portrait of the writer and poet Cesare Pavese, and a close-up of one of his poems, with words in the author’s handwriting, “Hai un sangue, un respiro” (You have one blood, one breath).

A

poet, a novelist, a literary critic, a translator, and widely considered among the major authors of Italy in the 20th century.

His work fuses considerations of poetic and epic representation, the theme of solitude, and the concept of myth. He began his career with poetry. His first book was a collection of poems entitled Lavorare stanca (Hard Work) came out in 1936 had been shortened by four poems deleted by fascist censors. Seven years later, he published an expanded version nearly double the size of the original. His major novels include  

Il Compagno (The Comrade), Tra Donne Sole (Among Women Only), and La luna e i falò (The Moon and the Bonfire). Pavese’s recurrent theme in these novels is the search of urban man, who is caught in continually changing situations, for permanence and stability. In 1950, unhappy with both his personal life and the political climate of postwar Italy, he committed suicide.
Source: Wikipedia 

Charles Baudelaire

He was a French poet, noted essayist, art critic, and a pioneering translator of Edgar Allan Poe’s works. Baudelaire is considered to be one of the innovators in French literature and often called as the “father of modern criticism”. 

The stamps, featuring Baudelaire, is a part of the 5-set commemorative stamps issued by the Mauritius Post Ltd., to highlight the country’s presence in World Literature.  The five featured – Baudelaire, Bernardin de Saint Pierre, Alexandre Dumas, Mark Twain, and Joseph Conrad – are world renowned novelists and poets who wrote on or visited the island between the 18th and 19th centuries. Baudelaire was on his way to India when his sailing vessel stopped in the port of St. Louis in September 1841. While there, he found the island and its inhabitants awe-inspiring and wrote a sonnet for a charming lady, entitled À une Dame Créole. Baudelaire’s first and famous work is a volume of poems called Le Fleurs du mal (The Flowers of Evil). I thought Baudelaire’s name rang a bell for it’s the family name of the protagonists of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events. And I was right, they were indeed named after him!
Source: Wikipedia and Mauritian Philatelic Blog.

Robert Burns

Robert Burns, born into a farming family in Alloway in Ayrshire in 1759, is universally known as Scotland’s national poet and this Special Stamp Issue commemorates the 250th Anniversary of his birth.  It is also released in time for for the annual Burns Night celebrations.

When this edition was  unveiled and issued to the public in 2009, Robert Burns became the first person outside of the Royal Family to be celebrated with three collection stamps!

The stamp features the title of one of Burn’s greatest poems with a detail from Robert Burns turning up a mouse in her nest with his plough. He is regarded as a pioneer of the Romantic movement and after his death became a great source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism.

Although Burns died at a young age of 37, his poetry has made him a cultural icon in Scotland. One of his poems, Auld Lang Syne, is traditionally sung around the globe to mark New Year.  I studied a bit of literature in uni and one of the Burns poems we studied, that I really like, was the Red Red Rose.Who could ever forget the first lines..

O my Luve’s like a red, red rose
That’s newly sprung in June:
O my Luve’s like the melodie
That’s sweetly play’d in tune!

Source: Wikipedia, Royal Mail

Pink Saturday 002: Living on a suitcase

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Pink Saturday
This is my second week here at Pink Saturday. I hope I’d be able to participate every week :)

                                          Sent by Kristin
                                         Postmarked Long Island, NY

                                         31 July 2006

Pink sheets, anyone? The room looks dainty and girly, isn’t it?
I haven’t been to a hotel with pink sheets!
Back in the early 2000s I experienced living out of my suitcase. I was traveling both locally and internationally on a regular basis but stayed only for brief periods of time, doing some researches and monitoring and evaluation of our projects. It’s a very fast-paced life, I was always on the road and the hotel rooms where I stayed served as my home away from home. But don’t get me wrong, I was single at that time and enjoyed every minute of it!

Living in hotels I took advantage of the hotel amenities like gym, sauna, swimming pool, room service, etc… to keep me from getting bored and relaxed at the end of a busy day. In one of the hotels I stayed at in Tokyo was that the shades open automatically at 8am and closes at 7pm and the cooler/heater adjusts to a comfortable level depending on the weather.  I know, from where most of you probably are this is considered “common”! Nowadays I know this kind of conveniences can now be had at your own home. All you have to do is have a home automation software installed in your house and – voila! Your lights turn on at the time you set it, your  house warms or cools at a level of your liking, or your coffee starts brewing while you are in the shower. Wouldn’t it be nice to have some kind of automation in our homes?

San Joaquin, CA: The Valley of Abundance

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This is one of the hand-me-down postcards in my collection. What a stunning view of the San Joaquin Valley and the majestic Sierra Nevada mountains in the background. Don’t you just love the wide, open space? Simply awesome!
 

Postmarked 26 Dec 2008, San Diego, California

The San Joaquin Valley is a huge valley in Central California and is one of the richest areas in the world. Some of the popular cities within the San Joaquin valley are Modesto, Fresno, Chowchillia, Delano, and many others.

The sender of the postcard once drove through this area on a regular basis. Her work as a state park ranger in the southern part of the state in the desert gives her a chance to come here often. On summer days, it could actually get hot and very dusty as it doesn’t get much rain often there. Her husband, she shares in her message, is into Medicare Supplemental Insurance business, a very lucrative and important industry. What he does is to provide information and choices, such as Medigap Plan L, to people from all walks of life. She says both their jobs are challenging; while she’s making sure that the state park is well-protected and keeps people informed about the natural, historical and scientific info about the park and its environs to the public, her husband provides Medicare Info. How about that? I think that’s interesting.

1940s Gal Pals

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Wow – look at what I found in the mail:                                                           

Gal Pals
Gal Pals, Women’s Friendship and Association. The White Plains Bridge Club, Greene County, Georgia, 1941.

Dear Ana…

I had a wonderful afternoon of bridge with the girls today. I had terrible cards, but the company was great, though, and we all had a good time chatting about baking cakes and sewing, our devotion to our dear husbands as well as how to increase breast milk production, which, of course, drew a lot of laughters. Wishing you were here. Now I got to go and start making dinner for my dear R… 

Love, 

Sreisaat

No, no, no.. that’s not the real message at the back of the card. That’s just how I imagined the message I would be writing to a friend had I been one of the bridge players! *lol* Not many knew of this but I have a strong interest in the past, and I find it fun to wind the clock backwards from time to time and revisit how it was like back then. This postcard was taken in 1941, and, although in a different era, it reminded me of a BBC Wales production I watched just recently. Called the “CoalHouse“, it featured three modern-day families transported back into the South Wales coalfield of 1927, leaving behind all the modern-day luxuries and lifestyle for a basic miner’s cottage with a shared toilet and no electricity and running water. It is a fascinating look at how families lived at that time and a serious look at how coal mining operated, and how it affects the lives of the families involved. A must-watch production, so go find a copy from your nearest DVD shops.

This postcard was one of the free extra goodies that were included in my purchase at the swannandsmerlin store at etsy.com. She has some of the cutest paper products around so if you need something, please visit her etsy store. Thanks, Odette!

A bit of laugh here tonight

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I was looking at my Blogger stats a while ago and I was surprised to see a referral from Google; the referral is from a Google search for “Chippendales”, you know, the popular erotic male dance group. I can only guess why some hits landed on my site. And I was right. It’s because of this:

Chippendale chair made in Philadelphia between 1760-1765
Can you imagine????????? That’s  hilarious!
Well, to those looking for the gyrating Chippendale dancers/models and ending up in this blog, sorry to disappoint you. No such “show” exists here. Only the Chippendale chair on a stamp, as seen above, can be found. 
Allow me to give you a piece of information about the Chippendale style of furniture. This is not an ordinary piece of furniture. The Chippendale style was named after the English cabinetmaker Thomas Chippendale whose book on design was very much influential to designers and furnituremakers from America and Europe. As most of his designs are very stylish, intricately designed furniture that costs a fortune. The Chippendale chair depicted on the stamp above is a stylized rendition of an American designer named Lou Nolan, based on a chair that is a part of a decorative arts collection found at the Diplomatic Reception Rooms at the US State Department in Washington, DC. Sounds like it’s been used like a modern office furniture – too artsy for an office, don’t you think?

US_469027: The King of Rock ‘n Roll

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Hello. I am glad that my consultancy work is wrapping up this week so I’ll have time to update as much as I like. Just a quick update today though as I have some paperworks that I want to finish before the deadline.
So anyway, last year, I received an Elvis Presley postcard from a Postcrosser who is from Jackson, Tennessee. 

The many faces of Elvis Aaron Presley, a cultural icon and the undisputed King of Rock ‘n Roll
I am posting this with special mention to Flo2008 who admits she is a HUGE fan of the King! Although Elvis was born in a small town in Mississippi, his family moved to Memphis, Tennessee where he grew up. Memphis is about 85 miles driving distance to Jackson where Flo2008 lives, which is about an hour and half drive.  
Flo2008 is definitely a fan through and through, growing up listening mostly to Elvis’s music. Back in Asia, in the Philippines, my parents also grew up listening to Elvis and, although not as avid fan as others are, my mother especially, was able to collect postcards and cassette tapes sent to her by her American pen pals. (You should see how my dad makes an impressive rendition of Elvis’s Hound Dog!*lol*) Amazingly, more than 50 years later, the King’s incredible popularity has remained high all over the world.

I can see why girls during Elvis’s time had fallen head over heels with him. I mean, just look at his image above – not only that he had a quite versatile voice, controversial unique moves (leg-shaking and hip thrustsaka, gyrations), but he also possesses the valuable assets making him the heartthrob of his time –  good looks, magnificent blue eyes and a beautiful set of long lashes, and a great skin complexion that obviously didn’t need an anti acne cream. My, watta guy!
The stamp used, on the right, is a 98-cent definitive stamp for international airmail featuring the state of Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park