Happy Sunday, readers. Back again today with three UNESCO sites from England: Canterbury Cathedral, Hadrian’s Wall, and the Tower of London.
All three cards were received from a private swap with Kerstin in England, sent in July of 2014.
Let’s go for something cute and cheerful today. It is nearly the weekend, so things should be looking up, right?
A herd of colorful elephants, from a Postcrosser in Canada. It is dated April 15, 2013.
And a Paddington Bear card from England, from a Postcrossing forums swap. I loved Paddington Bear as a kid, and I had a stuffed one that I carried around with me. He came complete with the hat, raincoat, and very tiny, removable Wellington boots.
I hope you can find joy today in something cute or a fond memory from your childhood. Or if your childhood was not so great, a fond memory from adulthood.
Today I had a big exciting mailbox opening moment when I reached inside and pulled out this card:
This is FK-22, an official Postcrossing postcard from the only current Postcrosser in Falkland Islands. It is the lowest-numbered Postcrossing card I’ve received yet, and I doubt that I will get another lower one! When I looked at the Postcard ID, I thought that the sender had forgotten to finish writing it, but no, it is really that short! And, even better, it has some of my favorites, penguins. These are rockhopper penguins.
To celebrate, here are some more penguin and sea bird cards that I’ve received recently from private swaps.
Birds of the Cornish Coast, from Mallory in the United Kingdom, featuring the puffin, which looks like a penguin but is from the northern hemisphere.
Some emperor penguins having a groom, from lumileopardi in Finland.
And finally these adorable and small blue penguins from Aunty Seahorse in New Zealand
So, has anyone else received a low-numbered Postcrossing card?
In March I received two great cards of an English UNESCO site new to my collection. They came from Dave on the Postcrossing forum and show landscapes from the Dorset and East Devon coastline:
The Old Harry Rocks are chalk formations in Dorset. Dave writes that the rocks were formed by erosion of chalk by the sea. He tells me of two possible origins of their name: they may have been named for the devil (called Old Harry), or for a local pirate, Harry Paye. The chalk cliffs were formed about 65 million years ago and are constantly being eroded and changed by the sea.
Stair Hole is just west of Lulworth Cove in Dorset. It is a good demonstration of the “Lulworth Crumple,” the folded limestone strata that rise almost vertically.
Dave sent me the cards in an envelope to save on postage, but also wrote a note on a really nice notecard that I want to share, too.
I really like this picture of different British stamps. It’s perfect for a mail enthusiast’s notecard!
Thanks, Dave, for all the lovely cards!
I have two more stamps from the UK’s Roald Dahl issue from last year! Nat in England sent The Witches and Fantastic Mr Fox, and she sent the stamps on their matching postal cards to boot:
I now have four of them! I have a hard time deciding whether Matilda or The Witches is my favorite Roald Dahl book. But I also loved The Twits, but I don’t have that stamp yet. I only need The Twits and the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory stamps to have all six. Thanks, Nat, for making my Dahl stamp collection 100% bigger!
I have a big stack of un-blogged about cards on my desk because I have fallen terribly behind in posting. I have so many new UNESCO sites to share that I am very excited about. Today I have two cards from Bath, England:
This is Bath’s Royal Crescent, built between 1767-74. It is composed of 30 grand houses. Although the fronts of the houses are all the same, each house’s owner was responsible for designing everything but the facade, so the backs of the houses are all different.
Here is a multiview of the Roman baths at Bath, which give the city its name. The Baths were built in the first century CE and dedicated to the Roman goddess Minerva and the Celtic goddess Sulis.
Both these cards come from Kym in England. Thanks, Kym!
Since July 4th (United States’ independence day) is this week, I’m dedicating a couple of posts to some American themes. But before that, I have other reds, whites, and blues to share:
From Kym in England, Jan Constantine Union Jack.
Postcrossing NL-1158189 from the Netherlands.
As you can see, the USA is not the only country that flies the red, white and blue. I’ve got some great United States posts coming up this week, though, featuring beautiful National Parks and Monuments, new state maps, and more.
Some postcard collections are easier to complete than others. Getting a card from every UNESCO site, for example, is quite difficult, since there are so many of them, and some are very remote. So in addition to big goals, I thought I’d set some easy goals for myself. Like my goal to have a card showing every currently reigning sovereign queen. There are only three: Elizabeth II of England (and more), Beatrix of the Netherlands, and Margrethe of Denmark. I haven’t found anyone in Denmark to send me Queen Margrethe, but I have quickly completed 2/3 of the collection:
This card of Queen Beatrix comes from Erica_donker on the forums. I’m not sure if this one should count, since the picture was taken in 1959, when Beatrix was still just a princess. I think it counts, though. Also, it is apparently difficult to find more modern pictures of Beatrix because, as Erica writes, everyone is interested in her son Prince Willem-Alexander. Sounds a bit like Queen Elizabeth, with all the attention on her grandson Prince William.
Perhaps because the United States doesn’t have a monarchy, I’m completely fascinated by them. Kings and Queens seem so much more interesting than lying and cheating politicians.
I almost forgot, the Queen Beatrix card came with some nice stamps:
I arranged a great swap with Ellen in England. She has loads of great British postcards, but these three are a nice addition to my UNESCO collection:
And Westminster Abbey, where the Kings and Queens are crowned and the location of many Royal Weddings. There are many famous figures buried here, as well, including Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton, and abolitionist William Wilberforce.
Ellen used some Matilda stamps and a new-to-me James and the Giant Peach stamp from the new Roald Dahl stamp release:
These UNESCO sites are unique because I have actually visited all three of them! It has been several years since I was in England (I was there in 2005). I want to go back and revisit these places, since I don’t remember them as well as I want to. Of course there are many more places I’d want to see. It will have to be a long trip!
My qual is finished! Now I can get back down to sharing my mail with all of you. I’ve been getting veritable piles in my mailbox the past few mail days. I guess that’s what happens when you offer all 700 or so of your cards for trade on the Postcrossing forum (that’s still open, by the way).
This card is special because it has not one, but two favorite things from childhood on it:
And the stamp! They come from gran7, who also sent this card from Saltaire. She writes that she likes to read Roald Dahl to her grandchildren. That sounds so wonderful! I read Roald Dahl as a kid, I hope I can read his works to my kids and grandkids someday, too. Although he’s best known as a children’s writer, he’s written some stories that are definitely not for kids that are also quite enjoyable.