Monday, October 4, 2010

A lovely Swiss cover!

Received another wonderful cover from Geuensee, Switzerland! Many thanks to Vural Oguz!

The stamp franked on the left of cover belongs to a set of "Special" stamps issued in 1987 to commemorate a number of occasions.

The stamps in this set depict the "50th Anniversary of Mobile Post Office", "150th Anniversary of Swiss Engineers' and Architects' Association", "Bimillenary of Thermal Springs in Baden", "450th Anniversary of Lausanne University" and "Geneva Airport Rail Link".

And the stamp on the right was issued on 3rd Sept 2010 to mark the "50th Anniversary of European Free Trade Association (EFTA)".

The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) is a free trade organisation between four European countries that operates parallel to, and is linked to, the European Union (EU).
EFTA was established on 3 May 1960 as a trade bloc-alternative for European states who were either unable to, or chose not to, join the then-European Economic Community (EEC) which has now become the European Union (EU). The Stockholm Convention, establishing EFTA, was signed on 4 January 1960 in Stockholm by seven countries.

Today, only Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein remain members of EFTA (of which Norway and Switzerland are the only remaining founding members). The Stockholm Convention was subsequently replaced by the Vaduz Convention. This Convention provides for the liberalisation of trade among the member states.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Kenya's Ceremonial Costumes Cover!

Just a short post on this busy wednesday to share with you an awesome Kenya cover received from Bhavin R.Gada. Thanks bro!
The lovely set of stamps franked on this cover belongs to the "Ceremonial costumes" series, issued in 2007.

It was postmarked on 23th Sept 2010 in Kenya and reached me on 29th Sept 2010 after traveling for about 7,661kms!

Monday, September 27, 2010

4 Lovely covers!!!!

Another nice surprise! This time from Cuba! In fact it is only my second cover from this Caribbean nation! A great thanks, Pablo!!
The stamps used on this cover belong to the 2008 "Cuba-Iran Joint Issue". The stamps feature a Ramsar site in each country, with the Ramsar Convention logo and the two countries’ national flags as the centre-piece. Featured are the Cienaga de Zapata Ramsar site in Cuba and the Anzali wetlands Ramsar site in Iran. The Iranian version of the stamp has the same images but with different wording.

Such a pity that these stamps were not postmarked. However an unclear postmark can be seen on the reverse side (this proves that the cover actually went through the postage system :))

In addition, Pablo enclosed a set of tiger stamps, issued in 2010 to commemorate the Year of the Tiger!

Although, Thailand is only 157km away from Singapore, it is rarely do I receive a cover from our ASEAN friend. Hence, I was extremely happy to receive one last week!

Terdsak Tublom used stamps from the "Bicentenary of the Demise of King Rama I of the Royal House of Chakri" series, issued on 06th April 2010. Thank you very much!

Rama I (20 March 1736 – 7 September 1809) was the founder and the first monarch of the reigning House of Chakri of Siam (now Thailand). He ascended the throne in 1782, after defeating a rebellion which had deposed King Taksin of Thonburi. He was also celebrated as the founder of Rattanakosin (now Bangkok) as the new capital of the reunited kingdom.
Rama I was born in the Kingdom of Ayutthaya, and had served King Taksin in wars against the Burmese Konbaung dynasty and helped him in the reunification of Siam. During this time he emerged as Siam's most powerful military leader. In 1782, he took control of Siam and crowned himself as the monarch.

The next 2 South African covers sent by D.Hazell show Train stamps from the "150th Anniversary of Railway" series (a continuation of his previous cover). Thank you so much!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

An awesome cover from Mongolia!

Extremely excited to receive this awesome cover from fellow ICCC member, Dashdondov J! Thank you very much! It is my second Mongolian cover!

The portrait stamp franked on the front of cover was issued in 2007 to commemorate the 780th Death Anniversary of Genghis Khan.

Genghis Khan (1162–1227) was the founder, Khan (ruler) and Khagan (emperor) of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death.

He came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of northeast Asia. After founding the Mongol Empire and being proclaimed "Genghis Khan", he started the Mongol invasions that would ultimately result in the conquest of most of Eurasia. These included raids or invasions of the Kara-Khitan Khanate, Caucasus, Khwarezmid Empire, Western Xia and Jin dynasties. These campaigns were often accompanied by wholesale massacres of the civilian populations - especially in Khwarezmia. By the end of his life, the Mongol Empire occupied a substantial portion of Central Asia and China.

Back of the cover shows stamps from the "Swans" series. They were issued in 1987.

This cover was posted from Ulan Bator or Ulaanbaatar, the capital and largest city of Mongolia on 10th Sept 2010 and took 11 days to reach me!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

My first cover from Aruba!

Many thanks to Rodel Evangelista for this great gift from Aruba! It is my first cover posted to me from this Caribbean island!

Located just 15 miles off the coast of Venezuela, Aruba enjoys a premium location outside the hurricane belt. Tons of beaches line Aruba’s coastline, ranging from the surfer’s beach to the family beach to the private romantic beaches hidden away from the crowds. The attractions extend far beyond the beaches. There are the coves of Andicuri and Dos Playa. The calm of the Conchi, or natural pool on the windward coast. Restaurants ranging from seafood to Oriental and lots of great places to shop – outlets, collector’s shops specialty and antiques shops boutiques – and many more.

Awesome isn't it? I am sure Rodel must have enjoyed this wonderful trip. The pair of triangular stamps franked on the top right corner belongs to the "Flower" series. They were issued in 2008.
We also have a Blue-and-yellow Macaw stamp from the "Parrots" series. Such a pity that the stamp was torn. Issued this year, the other stamps in this set depict a Yellow-shouldered Amazon and Scarlet Macaws.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

4 Covers to share!

Hey guys! Four lovely covers to share today!

An awesome set of 10 commemorative stamps was released on 25th June 2010 to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the 1st passenger train to be hauled in South Africa.
Once again, many thanks to D.Hazell for another great cover bearing 3 of these stamps.

The first stamp from the left shows 1860 “Natal” – the first locomotive to run in South Africa. The middle is 1948 Class 24 – the ultimate power on branch lines all over South Africa. And the corner right stamp depicts 1954 Class 25 Condensor. These 90 engines – the largest non-articulated steam locomotives in the world – were designed to re-use their water and savings up to 85% were recorded. No other country employed condensing engines on a scale as large as this.

Next is a beautiful cover from the Philippines, sent by John Paul B.Rodriguee (a new friend of this blog!) Thank you so much!

This cover bears a set of stamp from the "Deep Sea Lobsters of the Philippines" series. Issued on 30th Sept 2009, they show Northwest Reef Lobster, Two Spot Locust Lobster, Locust Lobster and Blind Lobster respectively.
The 2 identical stamps on the extreme left belong to the 2010 "Marine Life" series. They depict the Yellow Seahorse.

The third cover was sent by fellow ICCC member, Yves Lapointe from Canada. Thank you!

This awesome cover was franked with stamps from the "Endangered Species" series. To raise awareness about endangered species, Canada Post issued three sets of stamps featuring Canadian creatures at risk of extinction from 2006-2008.

According to the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC), there are more than 500 plant and animal species currently at risk in Canada. The homes of our wildlife are withering away at an alarming pace due to human activities like development, deforestation and pollution.

The last cover for the day was sent from the State of Qatar by Rodel P.Evangelista. Thank you!
The stamps belong to the "FIFA World Cup" series, issued in 2002.
The 2002 FIFA World Cup was the 17th staging of the FIFA World Cup, co-hosted by South Korea and Japan from 31 May to 30 June.
It was also the first World Cup held in Asia, and the last in which the golden goal rule was implemented. Brazil won the tournament for a record fifth time, beating Germany 2–0 in the final. Turkey beat Korea Republic 3–2 in the third place match.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Queen's Baton Relay Cover!

Many thanks to fellow blogger, Jeevan Jyoti for this wonderful First Day Cover commemorating the launch of the Queen's Baton Relay on 25 June 2010!
The Queen's Baton Relay, similar to the Olympic Torch Relay, is a relay around the world held prior to the beginning of the Commonwealth Games. The Baton carries a message from the Head of the Commonwealth, currently Queen Elizabeth II. The Relay traditionally begins at Buckingham Palace in London as a part of the city's Commonwealth Day festivities. The Queen entrusts the baton to the first relay runner. At the Opening Ceremony of the Games, the final relay runner hands the baton back to the Queen or her representative, who reads the message aloud to officially open the Games.

The baton contained 71 lights on the front, representing the 71 member nations of the Commonwealth Games Federation. A video camera built into the front of the baton recorded continuously as the baton travelled, and a GPS tracker was fitted, so that the baton's location could be viewed live on the Commonwealth Games Website.
The 2010 Queen's Baton was built from Aluminium, Gold with a 18 Carat gold leaf carrying the Queen's message.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Thief junks valuable stamps

Saw this interesting article so I thought I would share with you...

(Singapore Straits Time, 05 August 2010): Sorting his loot after a burglarly, Matthew Ong Joo Wah kept the S$180,000 (US$132,714) in cash and foreign currencies, the two Rolex watches worth a total S$11,000 (US$8,184), and threw away four albums containing old China stamps, which he thought was worthless.

Only after he was arrested about two weeks later, did he learn that the stamps were valued at S$100,000 (US$73,730). By then, they could not be found.

The 30-year old pleaded guilty to three counts of housebreaking on Thursday. As he had several previous convictions for theft and cheating, District Judge Sarjit Singh called for corrective training and preventive detention reports. Such longer and tougher detention is meant for seasoned offenders.

The court heard that at 12pm on 11 March 2010, Ong noticed that an apartment at Le Meritt condominium in Telok Kurau appeared unoccupied. He sneaked in after forcing open the balcony's sliding doors.

Finding a safe in a bedroom, he wrapped it in a blanket and carried to his car. After he forced the safe open, he kept the money, the watches but disposed off the stamp albums at the rubbish collection point.

Ong then went to Resorts World Sentosa (RWS), where he sold the watches to an illegal secondhand dealer and gambled some of the money away. The next day, he flew off to Vietnam with his Vietnamese girlfriend. There he gave her S$6,000.

He was arrested at the Causeway checkpoint upon his return on 26 March 2010. Cash amounting to S$113,400 (US$83,609) was recovered from him.

Ong also admitted to breaking into two other homes and stealing a total of S$17,000 (US$12,534) in cash and S$25,000 (US$18,428) worth of jewellery and watches. He sold off the stolen items and then gambled away the money at RWS.

Semi-postal cover from Turkey!

Recently, Turkish Post issued a lovely set of semi-postal stamps featuring two different types of locomotives. Great thanks to our fellow philatelist cum artist friend, Ahmet Demir for sending me this great cover franked with both stamps!
Ahmet also used 5 semi-postal stamps from the 1973 "Export Products" series on the back of cover. It is a pity that they are not postmarked!
What is a semi-postal Stamp?
A semi-postal stamp is a postal stamp issued to raise money for some purpose (such as a charitable cause) and thus sold over and above the cost of postage. Typically the stamp shows two denominations separated by a plus sign, but in many cases the only denomination shown is for the postage rate, and the postal customer simply pays the higher price when purchasing the stamps.

History of semi-postals
The first semi-postal was actually a postal card; to commemorate the Uniform Penny Post in 1890, the United Kingdom issued a card with a face value of one penny, but sold it for sixpence, with the difference given to a fund for postal workers.

The first semi-postal stamps were issued by the Australian colonies of New South Wales and Victoria, who both marked the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897 with stamps denominated in pennies, but sold for shillings, a 12x increase over the face value!

Monday, August 30, 2010

2 Neat Slovak Covers!

Received these 2 neat covers from Slovakia. Once again many thanks to Robert Brnka!
The first cover shows stamps from the "Seven Saints" series, issued on 27 Sept 2010.

The second cover features stamps from the "Sights of our Homeland" series. Issued on 18 June 2010, they depict Castle Betliar and Castle of Topoľčianky respectively.
The extreme right stamp is pre-printed inscribed "T2 50 g", which corresponds to the postage for a second class letter up to 50 grammes in the domestic service.

AWESOME aren't they?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Many covers to share!

Trust you guys are well! Here I have many awesome covers to share!

My first cover from Venezuela! Many thanks to Jesus Moret Y Ferrer! The lovely stamps are from the "Bicentennial Independence of Venezuela" series, issued in 2009.

Next is a wonderful cover posted from Vancouver, Canada! Courtesy of Kang Wei Xie! The set of 4 beautiful stamps belongs to the "Roadside Attractions" series, issued on 05th July 2010.

Once again many thanks to Koh Kok Keong for yet another beautiful FDC from Malaysia! Released on 31 July 2010, the cover features stamps from the "Grand Knight of Valour" series.
A lovely cover posted from USA! This time from Buck Creek, Indiana. Thank you very much, Tim Schenpp! Yes, I would send you a cover from Singapore soon!
Posted on 02 August 2010 in Bursa, Turkey, this gorgeous cover bears stamps from the "Railway Station Buildings" and "World Environment Day" series. They were issued on 15 October 2008 and 05 June 2008 respectively. Many thanks to Baris Yakar!
Last but not least is an awesome cover posted from Gujarat, India! Great thanks to Shrikant Modh! The stamps belong to the "XIX Commonwealth Games" series.

The Games are scheduled to be held in Delhi, India between 3 October and 14 October 2010. It will be the first time that the Commonwealth Games is going to be held in India and the second time the event has been held in Asia (after 1998 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia).
That's all folks! Have a great weekend!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Latest Youth Olympic Games Stamps!

The first-ever Youth Olympic Games will be held in Singapore which starts from 14 to 26 August 2010 (Beginning tomorrow!). Young athletics aged between 14 and 18 years, will complete in 26 sports and take part in a culture and education programme.

To celebrate this special event, Singpost is releasing another set of four beautiful stamps (This is the third stamp issue timed to commemorate the start of the inaugural YOG!).

The stamps come in a set of four designs featuring Singapore YOG mascots, Lyo and Merly

The first two designs highlight the World Culture Village and Island Adventure formats of CEP. Athletes will learn diverse cultures, teamwork and leadership through these two activities. The other two designs show Lyo and Merly engaging in the sports of swimming and basketball. Lovely!

The stamps are valued at 1st local (S$0.26), S$0.65, S$1.10 and S$2.00 respectively. (1 Singapore dollar equals about US$0.73)

I will be using these stamps on my next covers to my friends. Hopes they will help to spread the Olympic spirit in a fun way!

Talk to you guys again soon. Bye!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Many covers to share!!!

Hello! It has been a long while since my last posting. Thousands apologies for taking so long to write! Am very busy with my new house.

I received many wonderful covers during this short absence. So today I would try to squeeze in as many covers as possible. Enjoy!

The first cover was sent from Doha, State of Qatar. Many thanks to Evangelista! The two lovely stamps are from the "Capital of Arab Culture - al QUDS" series, issued on 03 August 2009 and "FIFA World Cup" series, issued in 2002.

Pos Malaysia always issues beautiful stamp sets and here are 2 examples. Courtesy of Khor Kok Keong. Thank you very much bro!

The 2 FDCs are from the "Malayan Railways" series and "Garden flower" definitives series. They were issued on 22 June 2010 and 01 July 2010 respectively.

Next is an awesome FDC sent by fellow ICCC member, Ihar Nemkevich from Belarus! He realised that I collect topical stamps of tortoises and turtles and took the effort to send me one (Reptiles of Belarus series, issued in 2003). A great "Thank you" should you happen to read this blog.

To make up for postage, Ihar used stamps from the "World Expo 2010 Shanghai China" series and 2008 Definitive "Gardens Flowers" series.
Another awesome cover! This time from Croatia! Many thanks to Josip Mikolcic!
The lovely stamps franked on the cover are from the 2010 "Croatian Fruits" series (top row), depicting Woodland Strawberry, Gooseberry & Grape, and also a stamp from the "Croatian Ethnographic Heritage" series, showing textiles from the Dubrovacko primorje culture. Beautiful!
Next, we have 2 covers posted from Hong Kong. Thank you once again to Brian Kam!

The United Nations declared 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity to promote the awareness of ecological balance. In response to this meaningful endeavour, Hongkong Post dedicated her latest stamps edition to living creatures inhabiting Hong Kong with a set of 4 lovely stamps displaying images of species endemic to Hong Kong.
The second cover bears one of the stamps from the "Characteristic Streets of Hong Kong" series, issued on 24 June 2010.
Hong Kong, a dynamic metropolis in every sense, is also a place brimming with unique local culture. This series features six characteristic streets in Hong Kong (namely Pottinger Street, Nathan Road, Hollywood Road, Temple Street, Des Voeux Road West and Stanley Market) to highlight the fascinating confluence of old and new, East and West in this city.

This neat Slovak cover features stamps from the "Milan Hodza" series and "Europa 2010 - Children's Books" series. Great thanks to Robert Brnka!

Milan Hodža (1878-1944) was a prominent Slovak politician and journalist, serving from 1935 to 1938 as the Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia and in December 1935 as the acting President of Czechoslovakia. As a proponent of regional integration, he was famous for his attempts to establish a democratic federation of Central European states.

Also many thanks to D.Hazell for another 2 gorgeous covers posted from South Africa! They feature stamps from the 2004 issued "Spiders" series, a 2005 miniature sheet commemorating the "Freedom Charter" and 1993 "Animals" Definitives.

Last but not least, we have 3 awesome Turkish covers from fellow philatelist cum artist, Ahmet Demir. He simply loves to mix Philately with his beautiful drawings! I always enjoy receiving his covers. Aren't they cool?


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