Friday, December 28, 2012

Alfred Faure, the Crozet Islands, TAAF

From Alfred Faure in the Crozet Islands, posted from aboard the Marion Dufresne. This was sent to me by a team from Belgium's National Botanic Garden who were headed down to Crozet to carry out  some research. Their cachet and signatures are on the front of the cover.

The other interesting mark on the cover is that of the team heading to Kerguelen to catalog items of historical importance: "Inventaire du patrimonie des TAAF".

An interesting side note for this cover. The Marion Dufresne ran into some rocks on its way to Crozet on 14 November 2012. Everyone was evacuated and the ship had to be temporarily repaired. It was decided that the Marion Dufresne should return to dry dock for permanent repairs so they had to end the rotation early at their first stop in Crozet.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Churchill, Manitoba 12-12-12

Churchill is a town in the Canadian province of Manitoba. It sits in the far north of the province on the shore of Hudson Bay. Under 1000 people call Churchill home. The climate is sub-arctic. There are no roads connecting Churchill to the rest of the province but they do have railway service and an airport.

They have lots of polar bears, hence the title "Polar Bear Capital of the World". There are special tour buses in Churchill that travel out on the tundra, allowing tourists to safely get close to and observe the polar bears that come to the Churchill area every Fall.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Project Mercury, 50th Anniversary of Third American to Orbit Earth

The postmark on this cover commemorates the 50th anniversary of the 3rd American to orbit the Earth. Wally Schirra completed 6 orbits aboard the Project Mercury "Sigma 7" space capsule on 3 October 1962. His total flight time was 9 hours and 13 minutes.

Friday, December 21, 2012

North Pole, Alaska 12-12-12

North Pole is a city of over 2000 people in Alaska. It's a few kilometers east of Fairfax along the Richardson Highway. When children in the United States write letters to Santa Claus, this is where they end up. The post office in North Pole responds to those letters and uses the North Pole postmark on the envelopes.

I like the "Earthscapes" stamps. There were 15 stamps in the set that was issued by USPS on 1 Oct 2012. They feature satellite imagery of natural, urban and agricultural landscapes from around the United States. Also on this cover are a couple of local post "labels" which are not officially stamps. There is mention of one of the labels on this cover here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Island, Nova Scotia 12-12-12

Saitama, Japan

This came to me from Ageo in Saitama-shi, Japan. It has a pair of "Letter Writing" stamps on it that were issued in July of this year. Very nice.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

South Korea, New Year's Greetings - Year of the Snake

This cover posted from Gwanghwamun post office in Seoul, South Korea, has a pair of newly issued New Year's Greetings stamps on it and was postmarked on the day of issue: 3 Dec 2012. Both of these stamps feature a glow-in-the-dark highlight.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

M/S Mary Arctica

This was sent back to me from the M/S Mary Arctica from Cape Town, South Africa, while on its way to Belgium's Princess Elisabeth research station in Queen Maud Land, Antarctica. The Mary Arctica is an ice hardened cargo vessel, owned and operated by Greenland's Royal Arctic Line A/S.  

M/S Mary Arctica webcam image:

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wolvega, The Netherlands

From Wolvega in The Netherlands, postmarked at the post office at Van Harenstraat 32.