Saturday, December 30, 2017

Bari, Italy

From the Southern Italian port city of Bari. I really like the Nutella stamp.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

USA, The History of Hockey FDC

A US FDC for the History of Hockey stamp pair issued jointly with Canada Post. I'm happy to see this postmark is a proper size and not really tiny like the postmarks used on the Canadian joint FDC.

Here's another one:

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Anniversary of the First Algerian Postage Stamp

This sheet was issued to commemorate the first postage stamp produced by the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria in 1962 and the signing of the 1 November 1954 proclamation. This sheet was unveiled at a philatelic exhibition that occurred in Algiers between 31 Oct and 3 Nov 2017.

The text on the left of the sheet is the November proclamation. In it the Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN) declared their intent to basically end French rule over Algeria. The stamp on the top shows the house where the proclamation was originally printed in 1954 and the press used to print it. And the bottom stamps shows the printing press used to produce those first postage stamps in 1962. In the background on both sides of this sheet is a faded image of that original stamp.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Twelve Greenland Expeditions book

This was published a few years ago by Greenland's Tele-Post. Hardcover, around 80 pages. It contains each of the twelve "Expeditions" souvenir sheets issued by Greenland Post between 2003 and 2014. Each sheet commemorated a specific Expedition in Greenland between 1818 and 1978 and each of those Expeditions is summarized in the book. At the time it was selling for 299 DKK with shipping ($60 CDN). I thought that was a bit much for me but when I saw it selling for 149 DKK with shipping I ordered a copy.

None of the advertising I read for the book said much about it really so I thought I'd post a couple of images of the book's interior to give a better idea of quality. It is very well produced. Exactly what I expected. It is available in four languages: English, German, Danish and Greenlandic.

Considering the time of year and where it was coming from, shipping was fast. Added bonus is the postage used to send it to me. Nice high value stamps, clean and used.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Monday, December 18, 2017

Taastrup, Denmark

Taastrup is between Copenhagen and Roskilde. I believe it's a railway hub and perhaps that explains the large PortNord terminal there. A nice selection of stamps from 2017.

Something that caught my attention was the amount of postage on this letter: 24.90 DKK. This letter cost twice as much to send than a similar letter would cost me to send from Canada. The rate calculator on the PostNord website confirmed it. I found a couple of articles on the internet from late in 2015 discussing how postal rates in Denmark were going to double, making them the highest of all EU countries. If that were to happen in Canada I'd be done with cover collecting.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Christmas in Norway

Christmas stamps from Norway. The stamp on the left depicts Christmas in the country and the one on the right shows Christmas in the city. The broken text at the top of the postmark says simply "Posten Norge" but V30 on the bottom is the code for Trondheim in central Norway.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Selca, Solvenia

Selca is a small Solvenia village, north west of Ljubljana. The two stamps at the top are roses but I can't seem to find much about the one at the bottom. It's a charity stamp, for the Red Cross. I assume it's from this year. On the bottom is says "Solidarity Week", 1-7 November 2017.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Dover, Delaware

Shark stamps from the US. From left to right: a whale shark, a great white and a mako. The pie postmark was from the Dover stamp club's annual stamp show held 21 Oct in Camden, DE.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Galópolis, Brazil

A small town/neighbourhood just south of Caxias do Sul. The stamp on the left shows a subway train in the Salvador City and Lauro de Freitas Subway System. It's a newer system and one of the most modern in Brazil. The stamps on the right are Brazilian bird stamps from 2008: a Kaempfer's woodpecker and a tropical screech owl.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Toronto Maple Leafs 100th Anniversary

I'm a Toronto Maple Leafs fan so this issue was nice to see. This year is the 100th anniversary of the team. There were a pair of domestic stamps issued on 24 October: one in a booklet of 10 and another, shaped like a hockey puck, in coil form. Both are self-adhesive.

But what I really liked was the $5 souvenir sheet. It has an actual Leafs crest attached to it. The jersey pictured on the stamp belonged to Ted 'Teeder' Kennedy who played for the Leafs between 1943 and 1957. The sheet was much larger than I expected and came in a protective folder.

History of Hockey: Canada - USA Joint FDC

The History of Hockey was a joint issue between Canada and the US, issued Ocbober 20, 2017. It's supposed to represent a shared love for hockey and how the game has changed over the years. The bottom stamps are a reflection in the ice of a player from the past. This year is the 100th anniversary of the NHL so perhaps that was the motivation behind this issue.

At first I was put off at how simple the Canadian FDC postmark was but then I noticed the hockey pucks on the top and bottom of the text, placed right under the blades of the players sticks. I like joint issues but I'm not that crazy about this one for some reason.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Australian Shipwrecks FDC

Just three of over 8000 shipwrecks lying beneath the seas that surround Australia: the HMS Pandora, the paddle steamer Clonmel and the Dutch East India Company's Zuytdorp. The Australian government protects all wrecks in it's waters that are more than 75 years old.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Kaliningrad, Russia

Russian Diplomatic Uniforms stamp issued in 2016. These are USSR uniforms from 1945. On the left is an Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary and on the right is an attaché of the People's Commissariat of Foreign Affairs.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Beautiful Roads of Korea

The images on these stamps are of roadways that cut through some of most scenic parts of South Korea's landscape. These stamps are really nice; gummed with a high-gloss coating. The roads on the stamps clockwise from top-left are the Gochang-Damyang Expressway, the Dangjin-Yeongdoek Expressway, the Iksan-Pohang Expressway and Heuksan Ilju-ro which is part of the road the goes around Heuksando Island.

The first-day postmark was applied at the Gwanghwamun (굉학문) post office. Gwanghwamun is the main gate of Gyeongbokgung Palace, in the Jongno-gu district of Seoul

Friday, October 27, 2017

Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Plovdiv: The second largest city in Bulgaria. I can just barely make out the "4004" on the postmark. This year's Europa theme is castles and the castle on this stamp is Asen’s Fortress. It's a very old fortress, mostly in ruins now, in the mountains just a few kilometres south of Plovdiv.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Australia, WRESAT Satellite

The first Australian Satellite, WRESAT, was launched almost 50 years ago on 29 November 1967.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Malmö, Sweden

This apple stamp from Sweden was postmarked in Malmö. I visited Malmö earlier this year while staying in Copenhagen. It was only 40 minutes by train over the Øresund bridge: 8km above the water and 4km through a tunnel beneath it. I had a good time in Malmö.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Spain 2017

This is an FDC from Spain, for a stamp issued earlier in 2017 commemorating the Spanish Antarctic research station Gabriel de Castilla. The base sits on Deception Island, at the end of the Antarctic peninsula, and has been in operation since 1990.

I also acquired some other interesting Spanish stamp sheets from Correos. The Star Wars sheet below is lenticular and gives the appearance of a 3D image. The technology is nothing new and as far as I know there is no connection between Spain and the Star Wars franchises but I'm a Star Wars fan and it looked interesting.

And this other sheet commemorates La Abadía del Crimen (The Abby of Crime): a Spanish 8 bit home-computer video game that was released in 1987. On closer inspection I discovered that in each stamp on the sheet is an area covered by thermal ink so when you place your finger on them, they "disappear" to reveal an artifact from the game. I tried to reveal the items on the lower right pair of stamps but I wasn't quite quick enough with the scanner.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Dutch Chickens

A pair of stamps from from the Netherlands from a recent sheet featuring Dutch breeds of chickens. The chickens on these stamps are Twents Hoen (aka Kraienkopp).

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Poolesville MD, USA

"Protect Pollinators" stamps on a cover postmarked in Poolesville Maryland. The town has a population of 5000 and is not too far from Washington DC. This year is the 150th anniversary of the town's incorporation.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Paola, Malta

Stamps from a series from Malta that show processional statues from various churches around the Maltese Islands. The two stamps on this cover are statues used during the feast of Santa Marija. It's the largest celebration during the festa season. The one on the right is from Mqabba, and the one on the left is from Mosta.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Birdpex 8

Birdpex is a stamp exhibition where birds are the theme. It takes place every four years and will be held again in May of 2018 in Bad Mondorf, Luxembourg. These Brazilian stamps issued 19 June 2017, from right to left are self-adhessive Araripe Manakin, Blue-eyed Ground Dove, Purple-winged Ground Dove and a gummed Araripe Manakin.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Kawasaki, Japan

The bridge on the red Kawasaki postmark is the Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line. It's a 4.4 km bridge and 9.5 km tunnel running across Tokyo bay, connecting Kawasaki to Kisarazu. In the background is Mount Fuji. And I believe what appears to be a sailboat on the left side of the postmark is actually the Tower of Wind. This structure supplies fresh air to the tunnel on the floor of the bay.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Kilchberg, Switzerland

Kilchberg is a town in Switzerland and part of the greater Zürich area: the canton of Zürich. It's just a short train ride from Zürich's central station. I recognized the name of the town because I've been there before. The Lindt & Sprüngli headquaters is in Kilchberg and we stopped by while in Zürich... maybe 15 years ago. Unfortunately they don't offer tours at Lindt but we did manage to get some free chocolates.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Gdańsk, Poland

More mineral stamps from Poland: agate, gypsum and malachite with azurite. Thank you Roman.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Green Succulents from the USA

Looks like circular international forever stamps are the norm for the USPS. It looks like all of the subjects on these stamps so far have been circular as well: Earth, Moon and Christmas Wreaths. And now an echeveria.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Aston Manor, South Africa

I got a bit of a history lesson from this one from South Africa. On it are stamps not only from the RSA but also "Venda" and "Transkei". These were known as Bantustans: territories that were reserved for black Africans in South and South West Africa during apartheid. These were two of four that were established in the 1970's and declared as independent, but only recognised as such within South Africa. All Bantustans were re-integrated with South Africa in 1994.

Aston Manor is a neighbourhood within the city of Kempton Park which is north-east of Johannesburg.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Yokohama, Japan: Lions Club International Centennial

This year is the 100th anniversary of the Lions Club International.  The Lions Club is a non-profit services organisation whose goal is to help local communities. It is a secular, non-political organization with over 1.4 million members in 200 countries. It was founded in Chicago in 1917 and became international when a branch was opened in Canada in 1920.