With 2020 just 34 hours away as I write this in southern Thailand, there are eleven stamp-issuing entities set to release a total of 59 stamps, five postal cards, 2 single-stamp souvenir sheets, one multi-stamp miniature sheet and more during the first four days of the New Year. I am certain I will learn of others sometime later. Last year, the philatelic agency representing the African nation of Chad unleashed dozens of stamps and mini-sheets on New Year’s Day all of which I discovered through listings on the eBay auction site.
To date, Great Britain has not revealed even the subject matter for its 2020 Stamp Programme in sharp contrast with 2019. You may recall that the design for one of the announced stamps for the D-Day 75th anniversary set included a major error in design and had to be recalled. Perhaps Royal Mail is taking extra time this year for fact-checking.
With just five days remaining until the start of the Twenties, I find myself inundated with non-philatelic pursuits. I live in a country that is over 90 percent Buddhist with most of the remaining population being Muslim or Hindu. Christians make up an extremely small portion of the residents. And yet, Christmas is extremely popular. While the majority of schools throughout the Kingdom remain open on Christmas Day, most of these host parties where all students and teachers are decked-out in red felt shirts, skirts and/or hats and sing very bad renditions of “Jingle Bells” and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas”. Of course, Santa Claus (and his sexy sidekick, Santy) must make an appearance to lead the throngs of children in games until the unrelenting tropical sun.