Wednesday, 27 March 2013

From Kongwak to Vanuatu via Hawaii: Volcanoes and other eruptions

There are things in the universe that are rumbling tonight in 'I heart post' headquarters; ominous 'things' are occurring... the tectonic plates of my little world are creaking just a little. The volcanoes are not exactly erupting, but I think the hot springs are beginning to boil.

The feeling of things being afoot came this afternoon when Ferret (my sister) told me a bushfire was dangerously close to my hometown. Turns out that things on that front should be just fine for my parents (touch wood), but the fire is dancing around other little hamlets in the bush near my parent's place. I hope that everyone is okay.

The other major thing that happened tonight (on a much less dramatic, and more insular Helen-scale) is that it looks like I  need to find a new housemate. My sister Elspeth has gotten an amazing opportunity to work in Vanuatu! Wow! Congratulations Elspeth. But oh no... what am I to do? No sister to go jogging with :( No sister to have coffee with in the morning. This is bad for Helen. Great for Elspeth though, so I will try not to be too selfish about the whole thing. And besides, now I get to plan a holiday to Vanuatu! Hooray! Everyone's a winner!

Now these postcards I am sharing with you are not of Vanuatu. They are from Hawaii... but Vanuatu has volcanoes too - and Elspeth is going to be living right near one. Scary! But exciting. I love climbing volcanoes - I have climbed one in Indonesia (Kawah Ijen, with an amazing sulfur lake in its crater) and one in New Zealand (Mount Tongariro... it erupted last year!). But I am yet to see lava. Although the thought of molten lava makes me a tremble a little - I totally want to see some! (But no bushfires. I definitely do not want to see bushfires).

Anyhow, my volcano postcards come from an album that contains not only postcards from Hawaii, but postcards from Hollywood and Disneyland too. They are a collection of postcards that I bought from the Kongwak market, that are in an old-school photo album collated lovingly by someone after a trip to the US in the 70s. It is possibly my favourite market buy of all time.

I love how 70s the images are, and the colours. I mean - doesn't the picture above look like a villan's lair from a classic Bond film? I love it. I have been meaning to share this wicked collection of postcards ever since I started this blog, so please savour all the retro-goodness:

So as I wind up this post, just before I head off to bed, it seems that a quick check of the Country Fire Authority website indicates that the status of the bushfire warnings have all been downgraded, and things are under control. Now for me to stay under control while I come to grips with the prospect of no Elspie for 12 months. Thoughts of visiting Vanuatuan volcanoes are helping.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Surf, post... and a little bit of cheese

The other week my beau/gentleman caller/significant other/boyfriend/lover (who is one person, not five, its just that I am still settling on a label - I think I like beau) went to the sunny northern state of Queensland. He went up to the Gold Coast for work - leaving me at home for a five day stretch where I anticipated I would read books, write blog posts, tidy my room, catch up with friends, do my Turkish homework and generally solve the issue of world peace, or something constructive akin to that. As it happened, fairly predictably, having my new beau (yep, I like it) out of town did not mean I magically accomplished all those things I have been failing at lately, it just meant I spent a fair bit of time on the phone.

Anyhow, I am telling you all of this by way of introduction to this random edition of "I ♥ POST". One of the things that I like about Jake is that when on our second date I slipped into conversation "oh yeah, and not only do I collect stamps, I also write a blog about the process" he did not say "cheque please! Lovely meeting you, etc etc, I must be off, running late for something, might see you around".

Nope - he said "oh, cool!" Cool! I mean, he was clearly lying through his teeth, but how lovely of him to do so!

So, knowing my affection for post, when Jake was away in Queensland he managed to send me four postcards over five days. Knowing that I place more importance on the stamp than the postcard - he bought a new series of four stamps issued by Australia Post on the topic of Surfing. Surfing and Queensland go hand in hand - fantastic thematic choice!! I was so impressed.

Aren't the stamps lovely? I love how they are all different - the typography on each is as unique as the images. Very nice.

Anyhow, the stamps were just the start. He bought me back the coolest bit of 'post' ever! This may not seem as exotic to my American readers, but to me it is amazing: Jake bought me back a US post office box door that he found in a second hand shop in Bris Vegas!

Pretty cool, huh?! I will have to find something cool to attach it to, my own lockable stamp box? And that is not all... just when you thought Jake couldn't get any sweeter, he also went out and bought me the first day cover, just to make my collection complete. Awwww!

Pretty Impressive, hey?

I don't know about your hippo drawing Jake, but you are pretty impressive.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Abstract Education: Sunday Stamps

The theme this week for Sunday Stamps is abstract designs. I love this set of Education themed stamps, and have been waiting for just such an excuse to share them.

This set comes from my Grandma Nellie. The packaging above is complete from when they were issued in 1974, in a bright sealed yellow envelope. But my Grandma being a hoarder kept one mint set unopened and also another opened set - so I have the information from inside as well, on this lovely card:
The four stamps only celebrate four aspects of the broad spectrum of the Australian education scene (as the explanatory card says), namely: Pre-School education (5c), Correspondence School (11c), Science Education (15c); and Advanced Education (60c). I am pretty much going to let the stamps speak for themselves this week, so here they are:

They are very bright and colourful, and very abstract representations of the education sector, so I thought they were pretty perfect for this week's Sunday Stamps. To check out other patterned and abstract designed stamps, click on the Sunday Stamps button below and enjoy. Happy Sunday, folks.