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I’m becoming increasingly convinced that either my local postman or somebody at the main post office is withholding my mail from delivery until they decide that I have “enough” to make it worth their while.  Last Wednesday, I received some 14 pieces of mail after quite a long period of nothingness and today there were nine envelopes waiting for me at the reception desk.  I’d only received one postcard in the interim (one picturing the Bohemian town of Joachimsthal).  But no matter, at least the mail does arrive slowly but surely and it’s nice to have such treasures awaiting me when I return from a 13-hour day at work.

New stamp arrivals -- 11 June 2015

Bech001As I’m currently making small purchases – single stamps and sets to fill a few gaps and build new topical interests – the nine envelopes received today contained a total of 27 stamp items from eight different countries.  Only two of the stamp-issuing entities are “new” to my A Stamp From Everywhere collection – British Bechuanaland and Bechuanaland Protectorate (the northern section of the the Bechuanaland region in southern Africa).

A glance at the scans above will reveal a few of the themes I’m  working on – Places I’ve Lived and The Story of My Family (my father was a missile instructor at Fort Bliss) are the less obvious. 

Picture side of Swedish stamped postcard, 1977I’ve started to collect stamps picturing Charles Lindbergh because my life-long interest in his historic first flight across the Atlantic was rekindled last year by reading Bill Bryson’s excellent One Summer: America, 1927.  The first day cover for the United States’ 1977 issue marking the 50th anniversary of his flight was the first I received through the Postal Commemorative Society.  I vividly remember buying a few of the stamps shortly after their release, pasting one inside the front cover of my paperback copy of The Spirit Of St. Louis and getting it postmarked at the Hendersonville, Tennessee, post office near our home at the time.  The Wright Brothers stamps were similarly inspired by reading a book – David McCullough’s recently published biography.

Ajman23The Ajman airmail stamps (Scott #C1-9) were purchased as they are actually listed in the catalogue whereas a set of (rather ugly) international military uniforms that I received in a packet a couple of years ago is not listed.  However, I’m rather disappointed in the torn lower left corner of the 15-naye paise value.  I’ll probably use the 35np camel as the Ajman representative stamp on the ASFEW album page.

Lastly, I want to mention that I absolutely love the design of the two stamps from Gibraltar (Scott #932-933) received today.  The tiny colony always seems to produce some of the nicest-looking stamps around.  I look forward to obtaining more (these are only the second and third that I own from “The Rock”).

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The French Lindbergh stamp from 1977 (Scott #C49) is also strikingly beautiful…

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Happy Collecting!

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I’d started to worry as I hadn’t received much in the way of mail for the past two weeks or so.  I’d been waiting on numerous stamps won in eBay auctions, several for longer than the average three weeks.  I felt that I’d receive something on the day following Monday’s Vesak Buja holiday but there was nothing…

Austria062When I returned home this evening, one of the young women who work at the front desk of my guesthouse came rushing up to me:  “Mr. Mark, you have mail!”  She then gave me a stack of fourteen envelopes from seven different countries, almost all fairly festooned with colorful stamps.  I often wonder what the staff things about the amount of mail I receive and the decorations thereon.

Yes, it was a really good mail day.  Recently, I’ve been purchasing individual stamps needed for one or another of my various topical collections and to add to my A Stamp From Everywhere collection.  Today’s mail brought a total of 137 stamps from 110 different countries; most of these were in one packet sold as “100 different stamps from 100 different countries” which turned out to be an excellent mix.  I was able to add 39 “new” countries to the ASFEW list:

  • Albania
  • Argentina
  • Bahrain
  • Belgian Congo
  • Cameroun
  • Colombia
  • Dubai
  • Faroe Islands
  • German Offices in China
  • German Offices in Morocco
  • Gibraltar
  • Gilbert & Ellice Islands
  • Gold Coast
  • Grenada-Grenadines
  • Macedonia
  • Malagasy Republic
  • Malaya
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands Indies
  • Niger
  • Niue
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Rhodesia & Nyasaland
  • Rwanda
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Spanish Sahara
  • St. Vincent
  • Suriname
  • Switzerland
  • Tripolitania
  • Uganda
  • United Nations-New York
  • Upper Volta
  • Venezuela
  • Yugoslavia (Kingdom of Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia)

This brings me the total of stamp-issuing entities in the ASFEW collection to 229.  I really need to get cracking on the album pages; I’ve only created pages for eight countries thus far.

Madonna-of-Bruges001aThere were also three postcards amongst all of this mail, which I’d purchased on eBay – two showing buildings in Nashville, Tennessee (The Hermitage and The Parthenon reproduction) to add to a planned “My Life In Stamps and Cards”-themed collection, the other portraying the famous Madonna of Bruges statue inspired from my viewing of the movie The Monuments Men and subsequent reading of the book.  I’ll blog about those on “Please, Mr. Postman!” sometime in the near future.

20150603-000aI try my best to “process” new stamps as soon as I can after they arrive.  This entails marking them as “received” in a spreadsheet where I track my eBay activities and then scanning the stamps.  I then need to straighten and crop the images before finally entering them into my inventory program of choice (StampManage 2015) and then putting them in stock books until the time I can add them to proper stamp album pages.  Scanning is the most time-consuming part of the process as I scan each one individually at 1200 dpi.  I’ll write-up the entire routine in much greater detail someday soon, along with a review of StampManage, for this blog. 

 

I wish all days were as good mail days as this one was…

Happy Collecting!