Monday, April 29, 2019

Milan, Italy

Three stamps. One showing a Giotto fresco in the Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi entitled "The trial of fire in front of the Sultan". A stamp commemorating the 50th anniversary of the newspaper Avvenire. And a stamp commemorating the bicentenary of the introduction of stamped postal cards in the Kingdom of Sardinia.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Dutch Architecture

Stamps from a sheet issued 17 September 2018. The "New Construction" architecture movement of the early 20th century was all about functional design. On these stamps, the Zonnestraal sanatorium in Hilversum (1928) amd the Glaspaleis department store in Heerlen (1935).

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Japan's Syowa Station and the Icebreaker Shirase

A pair of covers from the Japanese Antarctic research program. One form the Syowa Antarctic research station and the other from the Icebreaker Shirase. I received both of these on the same day. Despite the fact that I sent them to different addresses, I suspect they were prepared together and sent back from the same source. The date stamps are the same.

Syowa Station is Japan's permanent Antarctic research station. It's quite large, consisting of several buildings that can accommodate up to 110 people with an overwintering crew of 30.

Syowa is supported by the icebreaker Shirase. The current version of this vessel was put into service in 2009. The cachet on the bottom left of the Shirase cover shows an image of a stone shrine  honouring Shin Fukushima: was a Japanese Antarctic expedition member who died in October 1960.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Lucky Pigs from Switzerland

Pigs are considered lucky in German speaking regions of the world. Hence the issue of this "Glücksschwein" stamp from Switzerland. It's printed on flocked paper which gives it a soft fuzzy texture. Like a pig I guess. It's a cute little stamp.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Aston Manor, South Africa

These were in my mailbox when I got back from a short vacation. Both from Aston Manor in South Africa. A nice selection of old and new stamps on the top cover. 

Monday, March 18, 2019

Neumayer Station III

From the Germany Antarctic research station Neumayer III. There are a couple of hand-stamps on the back as well including one for the 38th over-wintering team of 2018. Neumayer III was officially opened twenty years ago on 20 February 2009. It is located on the Ekström Ice Shelf near an iceport known as Atka Bay. The ice port is an indentation in the ice sheet that makes it possible for ships like Polarstern to load and unload.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Warrington, UK

The Buckingham Palace stamp was part of London Landmarks set issued in 1980. And the Sopwith Camel F1 was a WWI fighter plane in use from 1917 to 1920.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Toulouse, France

Toulouse. Forth largest city in France. Home to Airbus, a big university and lots of pinkish brick buildings. The stamp on the right commemorates the 70th anniversary of the UNs adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. And on the left, Looney Toon characters Coyote and the Roadrunner.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Concordia Station

Concordia is a French-Italian Antarctic research base, 1100km inland from Dumont d'Urville on a part of the Antarctic ice sheet known as "Dome C". The ice sheet here is over 3000m thick. The base is staffed year-round, housing around 50 in the summer.