Sunday Stamps 075: Santa Claus is in town! (and other Christmas stamps)

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Hello everybody! These days we are enjoying a sunny but cool weather here in the city. It’s definitely a welcome change!

Although we are not officially celebrating Christmas in Phnom Penh, a lot of establishments as well as (expat) homes are decorated for the holiday. While looking around a local market and stopping by to check some metal cabinets for sale (for my postcards, stamps and what-nots!), I noticed that a “Merry Christmas” sign was up and one or two salespersons were wearing a Santa hat! Clearly, we are all feeling the holiday fever here.

Which brings me now to my stamps for this week. First up from Portugal featuring the bearded and red-suited Santa Claus holding a present with one of his reindeers.

I hope Santa Claus won't forget to drop by the southern Philippines. That region was recently hit by  Typhoon Bopha and  the children need some cheering up!
I hope Santa Claus won’t forget to drop by the southern Philippines. That region was recently hit by  Typhoon Bopha and  the children need some cheering up!

The stamp is one of the 6 stamps of the Natal set issued by Correios de Portugal in 2009. According to StampNews.com, this set of Christmas stamps were original graphic designs reflecting Christmas exchanging of gifts and/or gift-giving tradition.

Just a thought. I find stamps featuring children’s drawings of Santa Claus (or any other drawings) the most endearing and creative ones. I don’t know why. Maybe there is something special and magical about the way children see Santa Claus (or other subjects, in general) and that is, somehow, translated onto their drawings. I do not own stamps with Santa Claus drawn by children but I want to have some, of course.

I have two more Christmas stamps from New Zealand and Croatia, respectively:

Above is one of the five Christmas stamp set issued in New Zealand in 2011.
Above is one of the five Christmas stamp set issued in New Zealand in 2011.

The Christmas stamp from NZ portays the Nativity scene, a Christian story told countless times from generations to generations all over the world. Here in the stable, Mary and Joseph cradling  the Infant Jesus who was wrapped in swaddling clothes. I love looking at the adoring gaze of Mary and Joseph. I also love the metallic colour incorporated in the dominantly blue theme.

And last but not the least, a Christmas stamp featuring one of Croatia’s greatest painters ever.
Christmas-stamp-from-Croatia-2008

Christmas has been a source of inspiration to many artists. It is the most wonderful time of the year, in my opinion. Families gather, forgive each other and renew ties, and celebrate the real reason for the season.

With a flickering Christmas tree in the middle, with the most beautiful meal of dreams on the table, with good, tame and patient things, with the chairs facing us and awaiting us, Emanuel Vidovićreminds us that our home is the church.” – Hrvatske Pošte

And on this note, I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas! Feliz Natal! Joyeux Noël! Sretan Božić! Maligayang Pasko. Среќен Божиќ. Craciun Fericit! ¡Feliz Navidad!

May we all remember the reason for our celebration this coming Christmas.

Sunday Stamp 052: Troleicarros de Coimbra

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The theme for this week is as you wish. Since I missed the theme streeetcars and/or public transportation theme two weeks ago, I am going to make up and post an entry with that theme 🙂

One of the five stamps in the Public Tranport set issued by the Portuguese Postal Service in 2009 featuring the troleicarro, or the trolley bus.
A troleicarro, or trolley bus, is a an electric-powered bus that draws electricity from overhead wires that are usually suspended from roadside posts using spring-loaded trolley-poles.
In Portugal, the troleicarros currently operate only in the university city of Coimbra and is operated by the municipal authority SMTUC. It was opened in 1947, it supplemented and eventually replaced the Coimbra tram network (Wikipedia). I tried to look for the significance of the year “1961” as it is written on the stamp but to no avail.

Anyways, two other cities used troleicarros in the past, namely, Braga and Porto.

Sunday Stamps 018: Darwin and the theory of evolution

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I would have wanted to post somebody from Asia but alas – I do not have, as of yet,  any Asian stamp that falls under this week’s theme  :(  Anyhoo,  I settled on this one and, well, I bet all of you know him.

 

 

Issued in 2009 by the Portuguese Postal Service, it consists of six stamps and one souvenir sheet with stamp.

Charles Robert Darwin (12 Feb 1809-19 April 1882) was an English naturalist who in his book, On the Origin of Species, published in 1859, he outlined how life evolved through natural selection over millions of years.

He established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestry, and proposed the scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection. (Wikipedia)

I think he is among the best scientists/thinkers of all time. Darwin’s theory remains controversial up this day generating a lot of heated debates, because his theory of evolution suggests that all species of life  evolved from a common organism. This drastically changed our perception of ourselves and the world we live in and challenged the idea of those who believe that all living things are created by God. In other words, it’s the classic issue of science versus religion.

I think I do not need to go further into the controversy surrounding Darwin’s work as it is a very touchy subject for some. There are, however, quite a lot of readings online for those who are interested to learn more about Darwin and his theory of evolution.

Sunday Stamps 017: Folk arts from all over the world

 

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This week was very hectic that my post for this week was somewhat in limbo. I was leisurely surfing the net,  toggling one window with news about the developments of the volcano eruption in Iceland to another window with eyelastin reviews for awhile, when I suddenly realised that my Sunday Stamps draft needs publishing. I was about to hit the publish button earlier today when the power went out, thus, the delay…

I have several stamps that fall under the specified categories for this week’s theme begging to be featured. As much as I’d like to, I’m not going to get carried away this time so I’m limiting my choices to only a few.

I’d like to begin with … FOOD!

The above stamp is a part of the seven-set and souvenir sheet issued by the Portuguese Postal Office in a series called “Sabores da Lusofonia”, meaning, flavors of Lusophony. Lusophony is a collective word referring to Portuguese-speaking countries, so the series features some of the most interesting influences of Portuguese gastronomy  on countries who share the Portuguese language. The above dish is from Africa’s Cape Verde called Do-cozido à cachupa (a stew, basically, of pork, chicken, carrots, potatoes, garbanzos, and many others). I have also another stamp from the same series featuring no caloeira tempura which I featured in the previous Sunday Stamps.

Next… traditional costumes. So many to choose from but here’s what I randomly picked out from the lot:

A part of the 5-set definitive stamps issued in 1994, showing the traditional costumes of Cyprus. This one is affixed in a postcard that was sent to my husband’s Grandma, from a cousin who went to Cyprus for a holiday some twenty years ago. This postcard is now in my possession, having inherited my husband’s grandma’s postcard collection three years ago.

 

And last,  but definitely not the least… the textiles of Croatia.

 

In 2008, the Croatian Post launched a five-set postage stamps each representing regional motifs of folk costumes. Sunja, magical flowers that survived from the Baroque altar cloth on the aprons from Posavina and still exude scents; Bistra, corals that have come from the Pannonian Sea and in clinking, dark red rows enrich the blouses from Prigorje; Bizovac, the dialectics of the Slavonian full-empty gold-embroidery; and the thick weave of dark earthen colour – the “interior combustion” of Ravni Kotari. I love these folk arts/handicrafts from Croatia and really commend those who still do this up to now, thus preserving traditional arts and culture.

What we refer to as folk art is the outcome of longer, slowed-down time. History has always been created by individuals, and this also applies to art. However, art has only slowly been deposited in the awareness, resting rolled up for a lot longer than the passage of events, in mutually unconnected mounts and vales, across seven rivers and seventy seven mountains. What used to be enduring and persevering – dialects, fashion, surnames, customs, meals, tools, jobs and days… – all of these were local, unique, different and individual; all of these have nowadays become assimilated into a universal mass in the communication cauldron. —  Croatian Post Inc.

Pink Saturday 010: Skinny wristwatches

 

   
Pink Saturday  

Here’s a fun postcard from Portugal:

The sender is a self-confessed fashionista and goes gaga over the latest trends in fashion, from

blac label clothing to funky accessories and latest designs in watches. I am fond of watches and I myself is a fan of this brand. In fact, when I was in college this brandwas so popular that almost everyone in school was wearing one. I myself bought several pieces out of the savings from my allowance. I prefer the unisex kind as well as the big sporty pieces with bold colours.  Out of the five skin choices above, my choices would be yellow, purple, and pink – yes, in this order! The brighter the colour, the better for me! LOL. How about you, what would you choose?

This postcard is affixed with the following stamps:

This is a part of a five-set series of definitives issued in 2007 featuring the public urban transport – the horse tram – that was in use back in the old days in Portugal. Notice the clean stamps, no postmarks 😀

Sunday Stamps 015: Hooves and wheels!

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We had a bit of excitement at home today. My younger brothers went over the house to watch boxing on TV (Pacquiao-Mosley fight) and brought along some barbie for lunch. I got busy with the food and entertaining guests that I forgot to click the “publish” button on time.

This week’s theme happens to be also one of my favourite themes,  both stamps and postcards. I have several in my collection, but I’ve narrowed down my choices to the old modes of land transportation (or vintage). Here are some of them:

This is a commemorative issue of the creation of the steam carriage (made in 1866). It is issued by the USPS in January 1991. The stamp features the steam carriage, named the “Richard Dudgeon”, which is now part of the Museum of American History of the Smithsonian Institution.

 

One of the 5-set definitives issued in 2007 featuring the public urban transport, the horse tram, back in the olden days.

 

The charming pastoral scene on this Swiss stamp was designed by Alber Manser, a well-loved Swiss painter and a son of an Appenzell farmer. The stamp above is the the third of a three se-tenant stamps entitled the “Descent from Alpine Pastures in Appenzell” issued in September 2009. These three special Swiss Post stamps showcase the spectacle of moving cows to and from alpine pastures in Appenzell.

It is a custom and a red-letter day when man and beast celebrate the descent from mountains to lower pastures in late summer. The centerpiece of every decent are the three cows with bells, led by a herdsman in the traditional costume worn on high days and holidays featuring bright yellow leather britches, a red waistcoat and a red undershirt, and carrying a pail with a painted bottom over his left shoulder. The three bells on the cows form a harmonic series with the herdsmen behind the cows who has bells and sings and whoop for joy to the three instruments, the only ones in the world to be played by cows.

   Source: http://www.stampmasteralbum.com

This beautiful stamp from TNT Post above is a special edition to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the DAF 600 car. The DAF 600 automoble was first manufactured in 1950s in the Netherlands and also became popular in the US. Aint that an awesome ride?

These stamps are my favourites in my hooves and wheels collection and I know you’d agree with me that they’re all so frame-worthy!

Sunday Stamps 004: Hungry for Love, Hungry for Food

 

 

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I had a bit of a travel emergency earlier this week so pardon the lack of posts (again).
I’m glad I came back on time for Sunday Stamps. This week’s theme is “any stamp you wish”. Easy, you say, but it was difficult to choose for me because I have a lot of favourites that I wish to feature right away. Since Valentine’s day is just a day away, I thought of featuring something that is an important part of Valentine’s Day, and other special celebrations…  and that is… food!

The stamp below features the scrumptious no caloeira a tempura, unmistakably a Japanese cuisine. I hope my translation is correct – otherwise, please correct me – it means low-calorie tempura.

   
It is one of the seven stamps and souvenir sheets issued by the Portuguese Postal Office in 2009. The series is called Sabores da Lusofonia – which means “Flavours of Lusophony”. I didn’t actually know what Lusofonia or “Lusophony” means but it sure does look delicious!

Sabor in the Bisaya-Hiligaynon dialect in the south-central Philippines (where I come from) means taste or flavour. Lusophony, I learned, is a collective word to mean Portuguese-speaking countries and territories. So the stamp series illustrate the dishes from Portugal and other countries who share the Portuguese language. Unknown to most of us, Portuguese is spoken as a home-language by more than 300,000 Brazilians of Japanese descent in Japan, known as dekassegui. A quick reference to the Wikipedia never fails to educate me every time!

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Guimaraes to Guimaras – an interesting Filipino-Portuguese connection!

I was meaning to publish this post last night but a horrible thing happened – the most scary and frustrating to ever happen to a poor blogger like me. I inadvertently deleted the whole entire texts when I was only supposed to highlight them to change fonts. Darn my effing mouse, I knew I should have replaced it since last month! And before I realised what I just did, Blogger promptly auto-saved! Grrrrr.


Anyways, I didn’t allow it to dampen my mood. Last night I was excited to post this postcard, and still am, today – the city featured is Guimarães — and surprise! surprise! Back in the Philippines we also have a province named Guimaras…




Sent by João (PT – 103,737)
Postmarked Municipio Porto
Dated 5 February 2010

It came as a surprise to me because most of the Philippine towns are named after Spanish towns and discovering about Guimarães in Portugal piqued my interest. After all, Ferdinand Magellan, or Fernão de Magalhãesthe dude who discovered the Philippine islands, was a Portuguese explorer who later in his life obtained a Spanish nationality and served the King of Spain to search for the Spice Islands. Also, back in time when I used to attend international conferences, colleagues mistook me for a Brazilian owing to my family name. Others also asked me about my unusual name – an English name and a Portuguese family name (most of them said it’s Portuguese rather than Spanish). All the while my family thought we have a Spanish surname… there sure is plenty of room for me to learn more about this interesting Spanish-Portuguese influences in my country of birth.

Let’s go to the stamp now… The fantastic stamp used in this postcard features an appetizing no caloeira a tempura (from Japan) and is from the series of seven stamps and souvenir sheet issued by the Portuguese Postal Office in 2009. The series is called Sabores da Lusofonia – which means Flavours of Lusophony. I didn’t actually know what Lusofonia or Lusophony is but it sure does look delicious! 


I also like the cancellation marks… it’s so clean that you can still see the featured food through it. Sabor in the Bisaya-Hiligaynon dialect in the south-central Philippines means taste or flavour.  Lusophony, I learned, is a collective word to mean Portuguese-speaking countries and territories. A little visit to the ever-reliable Wikipedia never fails to educate me every time!