Friday, September 28, 2012

North Shore's Autumn Foliage

World in Postcards October General Swap, Sender: Ritz Smitz
Sent from Minneapolis, MN, Sent on 11 Oct 2011
Received date not stamped on card, Traveled 12,553.42 km

I've always been a fan of autumn colors, like the sunset and sunrise colors. Though the red to orange hues invoke some form of melancholy, it also inspires quiet reflection. 

I like this poem that I found online about autumn, let me share a few lines:

Chanson d' automne

Les sanglots longs
Des violins
De l'automne
Blessent mon coeur
D'une langueur

The poem is by Paul Verlaine, and the lines translates to: The long sobs / of the violins / of autumn / wound my heart / with a monotonous / languor.

Hope everyone is having a blast for the end of another week and may we all have a reflective and quiet weekend :) Happy PFF!


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Tasses et coeurs en chocolat

Facebook Postcard Swap, Sender: Ines Rudloff
Sent from Hanover, Germany, Sent on 27 August 2012
Received on 17 September 2012, Traveled 10146.3 km in 22 days  

If you had difficulty reading the title of this post, you're not alone!

French is tongue twister for me. I guess I should have put the English title of this card instead, 'cups with cocoa'. But ok I admit, I'm partial with the French title cause trying to pronounce it and hearing myself pronounce it gives an almost similar pleasure with indulging on a rich chocolate drink, flavored with luscious caramel syrup on top. French ranks among the most romantic languages in my book, together with Spanish, Italian, and Korean.

Many thanks to Ines who went out of her way and surprised me with this real card. It's a published postcard from France & my original request was just a Touchnote's free postcard of it. But wow! I got a real card instead. I super love surprises from my postcards swapping friends.

Oh! You couldn't help but ♡  the good things in life. I'm linking up this post with Clytie's Random Hearts. Check out her page for more ♡ -ty posts.

... and it's my pleasure to share that I'm enjoying a cup of warm cocoa while writing this post. 
Happy Thursday morning everyone!

~ maria

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Las Vegas of Asia

Postcrossing Direct Swap, Sender: Dianna
Sent from Macau, Sent on 16 September 2011
Received date not stamped on card, Traveled 1,962.21 km

When I went there in 2009, it was casino there, casino here, casinos everywhere! I bet it is the same now, or probably ...more casinos?  I didn't try anything inside the casinos but I did go inside one, the Venetian Macao. It was splendidly amazing! It was so large, they have this San Luca canal inside, I think in the third floor where you can rent and ride a gondola. If I'm not mistaken, the bright yellow building on the left of the postcard is the Venetian Macao.

My favorite building though is the Grand Lisboa Macao, which can be seen right below on the left corner of the stamp that came with the card. Its distinctive architectural design sets it apart. I was curious if it's as magnificent inside as it was outside...but I only saw the building on my way back to the port to get into the ferry for Hong Kong, so perhaps next time. :D

~ maria

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sinulog Festival Queens

I just returned to Manila from a 5-day fieldwork in Cebu City, and lookie here on what I've got ;-)

I saw this card in one of the tourist souvenir stalls in Cebu International Airport. I immediately grabbed a few copies since I've never seen a similar card in any of the bookstores (where I normally buy my cards from) here in Manila.

Sinulog is one of the prestigious and colorful festivals in the country. It is one of the most awaited events in the country's cultural calendar, held in Cebu every third Sunday of January. The feast is in honor of the Child King, Sto. Niño -- baby Jesus. 

One of the highlights of the festival is the street dancing. The Sinulog Festival Queen is picked from the most elegant, most vibrant, and most gorgeous among the lead dancers of the competing dance groups. During the dance, she is the character of Queen Juana, carrying the image of Sto Niño. This is to remember the gift by Magellan to Rajah Humabon, king of Cebu in 1951 -- when he and his people accepted Christianity. 

Cebu City is dubbed as the 'Cradle of Christianity' in the Philippines.

I'm sharing this with Beth's Postcard Friendship Friday blog roll. Sorry for the late post. I was dead tired when I arrived home yesterday and fell asleep reading the messages from the back of 28 Touchnote and 17 regular postcards that welcomed me back to my apartment :)

To read more about Sinulog, please click here. Happy weekend everyone! 


Monday, September 17, 2012


Here are two cards that I received from late August and mid September last year. Both cards are from eastern Finland. Most of the east and central Finland is known as the Järvi Suomi or the Finnish Lakeland. This is the largest among the 4 landscape regions to which Finland is divided.

FI-1170093, Sender: Kirsi
Sent from Kuopio, Finland, Sent on 10 August 2011
Received on 28 August 2011, Traveled 9,552 km in 18 days

Hello from eastern Finland, area called Lakeland. There are over 10,000 lakes in Finland, most of them are in east. During summertime, sun doesn't go down at all so we don't get real sunsets. With happy wishes, Kirsi.

FI-1199790, Sender: Jaana
Sent from Mikkeli, Finland, Sent on 13 Sep 2012
Received on 26 Sep 2011, Traveled 9,391 km in 14 days
Greetings from Ristiina, Finland! Ristiina is a small village in eastern Finland, by the lake Saimaa. It is the biggest lake in Finland. If you find Mikkeli from the map, our village is about 20 kilometers to south-east from it...Best regards, Jaana

A sun that doesn't go down at all at summertime, wow! A sun that stays up until 9PM was already bothersome for me when I was in Edinburgh, Scotland. Now how much more is a midnight sun? But I think it would also be awesome for an experience! 

Looking into the map from Jaana... during summer, the Helsinki region gets up to 19 hours of sun and the Ivalo region up to 24 hours of sun in one day. 

I wish I can get a postcard with the midnight sun from would be a Postcard Perfect addition to these two pretty cards that I already have. :D


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Longing for the beach.

Inspired by the beach postcard in Clytie's page, I now dream for some solitary time by the beach. I long to get fine white grains of sands stuck in between the fingers of my feet, for the gentle sea breeze to plant butterfly kisses all over my face, for my heartstrings to reverberate with the music of the waves crashing into the shore...true enough, a time in the beach brings tranquility and peace.

Boracay, the best island in the world for 2012 by the travel 
magazine, Travel+Leisure. Find out more about Boracay, here.

Caramoan became famous for being the location of several 
international franchises of Survivor. For more information
about Caramoan, click here.

El Nido, Palawan -- if you've seen the movie, Bourne Legacy, this island
and beach would look familiar. Click here to read more about El Nido.

I realized that it's kinda queer for me to be thinking about the beach (it's rainy season in the Philippines as early as May until December, with the heaviest rains around August and September)...but oh well, I think the beach can be enjoyed at any season of the year!

~ maria

Friday, September 14, 2012

Daddy Long Legs

Facebook Postcard Swap, Sender: Claire Pai
Sent from Taiwan, Sent on: 26 Aug 2012
Received on: 7 Sep 2012
Traveled 1,185 km in 12 days

“He and I always think the same things are funny, and that is such a lot; it's dreadful when two people's senses of humour are antagonistic. I don't believe there's any bridging that gulf!
And he is--Oh, well! He is just himself, and I miss him, and miss him, and miss him. 
The whole world seems empty and aching. 
I hate the moonlight because it's beautiful and he isn't here to see it with me. 
But maybe you've loved somebody, too, and you know? 
If you have, I don't need to explain; if you haven't, I can't explain.” 

-Jean Webster, Daddy Long Legs

This is one of my most beloved animated TV series. In a way I can relate to Judy, the protagonist of the story. Like her, I also chronicled my professional and personal growth in college (even until now, actually!) through writing. She did it through letters, I did it through emails. She had Jervis Pendleton; I had Elizabeth, my Dutch foster mom. Judy and Jervis shared a rather comical romance, I developed a quasi - daughter-mother relationship with my foster mom. Like Judy who had a sweet finish to her story, I hope I can also have a chance for a long-awaited meet-up with my Dutch mom. It has been more than 9 years of a relationship based on good faith for us -- email correspondence, photo sharing, I hope one day I can say 'thank you' to her in person.

Happy Postcard Friendship Friday, everyone!

~ maria

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Resilient Heart

Samsung Touchnote Postcard, Sender: Ines Rudloff
Sent from Hanover, Germany, Sent date not stamped on card
Received on 12 Sep 2012, Traveled ~ 10,277 km

I still believe in the resilience of the human heart and the essential validity of love;
I  still believe that connections between people can be made 
and that the spirits which inhabits us sometimes touch.
- introductory notes for Four Past Midnight
Stephen King

Touchnote ran a send free postcards promotion concurrent with the Summer Olympics and the Paralympics. This is one of the cards I got yesterday, along with 8 more Touchnote cards and two regular postcards. No cards received today...One more day before the weekend, crossing my fingers for more cards to arrive tomorrow! :D Follow me to Clytie's Random Hearts page for more hearty posts!

~ maria

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I see the light.

I was a wrecked sailor, with the angry tempest ravaging my wooden boat...Then there's hope and a promise of salvation, coming from a lighthouse. And such is my delight that I keep on singing my favorite lines from the Tangled movie soundtrack:

And at last I see the light, and it's like the fog has lifted
And at last I see the light, and it's like the sky is new
And it's warm and real and bright
And the world has somehow shifted... 

I'm really loving this 'lighthouse' idea lately so I'm sharing here a few of the lighthouse postcards that I have. First one is the Cedar Point Lighthouse, "situated where Cedar Point juts out into the Chesapeake Bay" -- according to the information at the back of the card. The lighthouse is of Italianate style. It is listed in the USA's National Register of Historic Places.

World in Postcards October (2011) General Swap
Sender: Cindy, Sent from Maryland
Sent on 11 October '11, Received date not stamped on card
Traveled 13,758 km

Next is the Long Island Montauk Point Lighthouse. It is the oldest in the state of New York, completed in 1796. It is also recognized as one of the US's national historic landmark. The card came from France since the sender has already relocated there. 

Postcrossing Private Swap
Sender: David Russell, Sent from Lyon, France
Sent on 6 Feb 2012, Received on 16 2012
Traveled 10,765 km in 11 days

Last but not the least is the red-and-white striped Harbour Town Lighthouse in Hilton Head, South Carolina. Although it's a facsimile lighthouse, meaning it was built as a landmark or to symbolize something, the lighthouse itself is functional as a navigational aid. 

US-1256532, Sender: Quin
Sent from Wisconsin, USA, Sent on 29 Aug 2012
Received date not stamped on card, Traveled 12,836 km 

It's been quite a while since I posted something for the 'What I'm Loving Wednesday'. I hope you liked my comeback entry for this blog roll, folks! Let's keep our fingers crossed that this positive feelings linger and that they shall never change, and if they do -- only to be better. :)

~ maria

Monday, September 10, 2012

Kitty High Five!

I have these two perfectly matching cards from September last year. 

I love the complete picture of indulgence on the first card -- as how a simple gesture of affection from the striped kitty makes the spotted kitty really happy. I can imagine the spotted kitty giggling with pleasure. And it's like she's suggesting a high five for it. Hehe. 

The second card is like a zoomed image of that high five! :D

Postcard perfect indeed! Happy Monday everyone. May we all have a happy week.

~ maria

Postcrossing Private Swap                                                      Postcrossing Private Swap
Sender: Joke Roodenburg                                                        Sender: Masha/Chuvi
Sent from JM Aalten, The Netherlands                                      Sent from Moscow, Russia
Sent on 21 September 2011                                                     Sent on 20 September 2011
Received date not stamped on card                                          Received date not stamped on card
Traveled ~ 10,446 km                                                              Traveled 8,560.4 km

Friday, September 7, 2012

Don't be jealous!

"What about you? Are you happiest and saddest right now than you've ever been?"

"Of course I am."


"Because nothing makes me happier and nothing makes me sadder than you."

Nicole Krauss, The History of Love

This post is for the Postcard Friendship Friday blog roll at The Best Hearts Are CrunchyI can't help but smile a sweet smile, the postcard gives me warm and lovely thoughts. And having these nice thoughts as the not-so-easy week is winding down is like getting a reward! 

A Bavarian phrase is written at the back of the card. From my inquiry at the Postcrossing group in Facebook, a nice woman from Stuttgart said it means, "Don't be jealous." The sweet smile is plastered on my face because of the postcard and the prose, not to mention that this card is something on my wishlist: children and traditional costumes. I can't thank the sender enough! :)

~ maria

Facebook Postcard Swap, Sender: Vanessa Rebecca
Sent from München, Germany, Sent on 7 August 2012
Received on ~ 24 August 2012, Traveled ~10,170 km in 18 days

Thursday, September 6, 2012

A Hearty Welcome!

I love heart design on doors. For me, the hearts are signs of a hearty welcome by the owner of the place. I like this card because it allows you to see through those hearts of what's outside. And did you notice those newspapers inserted on the railing design? I'm thinking this postcard photograph was taken in an early in the day since the outside still seems to be just vaguely illuminated by the early morning rays of the sun. Same thoughts? Or not?

I've always wanted to feature a postcard with a heart here in my blog and link up to Clytie's Guest Heart Thursday -- finally, one is up!

Happy Thursday everyone. I hope the week is winding down into a heartwarming close for all of us. 

~ maria

Postcard ID: FI-1437211, Sender: DarkMarilyn
Sent from Helsinki, Finland, Sent on 26 May 2012
Received on 3 Jul 2012, Traveled 8.880 km in 40 days

Monday, September 3, 2012

Koalas & Kangaroos

Allow me to welcome the cold 'ber' months by sharing direct swap cards I received from Australia in September and October last year. 

First here's a card with lots of koalas from Carrie. She wrote:

"...A few months ago, I actually got to hold a koala at a wildlife sanctuary -- they're so soft and fuzzy! I also got to see some wild ones on a hike I took up in the mountains on Magnetic Island, which is just off the coast of Townsville, where I'm currently studying..."

Postcrossing Private Swap, Sender: Carrie
Sent from Townsville, Australia, Sent on 9 October 2011
Received date flooded on card, Traveled 4,653.5 km

The next one is a maxicard of a baby koala, from Maddy. She shared that baby koalas sleep for 23 hours a day and that they only eat eucalyptus leaves. They can be aggressive if threatened or frightened. They are also very private and stay up in tree tops most of the time. They can walk though. 

Postcrossing Private Swap Sender: Maddy
Sent from Victoria, Australia, Sent on 13 September 2011
Received on 23 September 2011, Traveled 6,185 km in 11 days

Now here's a kangaroo card from Anne. I've always find kangaroos interesting for carrying and feeding their babies in their belly pouch. The more interesting thing for them is that they seem so heavy but they can stand on their two hind legs and leap around like a frog. Anne said they can be a pest. The kangaroo however, is a national symbol of Australia and it also appears on the Australian coat of arms and some of its currency.

Postcrossing Private Swap, Sender: Anne C.
Sent from Queensland, Australia Sent on 9 September 2011
Received on 21 September 2011, Traveled 5,852.3 km in 13 days

Aside from the koala card, Maddy also sent me a flag card of Australia. It came with a kangaroo stamp at the back. :D
Postcrossing Private Swap, Sender: Maddy
Sent from Victoria, Australia, Sent on 13 September 2011
Received on 21 September 2011, Traveled 6,185 km in 9 days

Happy Monday and have a Postcard PERFECT week everyone! :)

~ maria

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Pink Trees of Wuhan Old Library

The back of the card reads:

Located in the high ground of the Lion Mountain, the old library is landmark and spirit symbolic of WHU which was completed in September 1935. The roofs of the two ancillary buildings connected with the large reading room which looks like 'Xieshan with ridge'. The reading hall is octagonal when viewed from outside with a circular outer corridor for student to rest and sightseeing. The old library is the model of Chinese and western culture, also the national key protected relic, also one of the Wuhan's Five City Landmarks.

I was totally surprised when I got this card. I didn't know that my bestfriend from kindergarten went to China. Ahh...some friends keep nice secrets sometimes. Not that I feel bad about it... I just wish I knew so I could have requested for lots of postcards :p

I'm curious of what ancient books and relics are inside this old library... It's also interesting why the trees are pink. Perhaps they're cherry blossoms? What do you think?

Happy Pink Saturday everyone! :)

~ maria

Friendship Gift Postcard, Sender: Lovelyn Lasac
Sent from Wuhan, China, Sent on April 30 2012
Received on May 4, 2012, Traveled 1,908.5 km in 5 days