Sunday, July 31, 2016

Furnas - Azores

Vera has been to the beautiful island of São Miguel last June and I'll be there next tuesday. I've been packing this afternoon and I'm ready to go... well, I still need to work tomorrow. Tomorrow, after 5 pm, I'll be officially on holidays. See you next week.
I'll visit the place on this card, Furnas, on friday. 

Furnas, comprising a lake, a valley and a village, is located inland from the south-eastern coast of São Miguel island. 
Furnas won its fame primarily from its 22 sources, consisting of mineral, sulphurous and mud sources that can be found here. Since 1630 when a powerful eruption took place, this region boasts an amazing variety of volcanic activity, among which also hot geysers (the hottest, Pêro Botelho, reaching 99°C). The thermal sources are reputed for their therapeutic qualities in the treatment of all kind of respiratory-related illnesses known up to date. The different sources can be used in balneotherapies as well as mineral water cures. Furnas Valley is crossed by two torrents, one is cold and one is warm and iron-bearing, and is considered one of Europe’s richest hydrological regions. - in:

Old Ladies - Portugal

I bought this card some time ago but last week, I got a written & stamped one sent by Joaninha. 

© Edição Vistal * Foto: W. Müller
I don't know where these nice old ladies live but they're perfect for my old people collection. 

PT RR - Group 30 * Churches

Time now for a RR in portuguese with cards from Lille, France and Tavira, Portugal. Cards sent by Ana & Ana. 

Clichés 818 DIAPHOR © Jean-Pierre Duplan - Christophe Verecque
A mix between gothic traditions and contemporary art, Notre-Dame de la Treille is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin. Famous for its rose, the cathedral greets every year on its square, the departure of a traditional procession.
At the 19th century, Lille was dreaming about building a sumptuous cathedral that would surpass the others, to shelter the saint Virgin’s statue, Notre-Dame de la Treille, patron saint of the town. The idea was good, and the beginning of the works in 1854 was promising. But the lack of means forced the workers to stop the building site and the cathedral was not finished.
In 1947, they made a provisory brick front that will be destroyed in 1990 to rebuild another definitive one, in a contemporary style very different from the rest of the cathedral. The building was completely achieved in 1999. Made with slabs that take the color orange with the sun, the front is over hanged by an original rose. Representing the death and the resurrection, the front is also decorated with surprising symbols like ufos, cosmonauts, the belfry of Lille or “E=mc2”.
The crypt also shelters the contemporary center of sacred art, which exhibits the ancient cathedral Way of the Cross. - in:

© Michael Howard Photography *
There are 37 churches in Tavira, this one on the card is the Hospital Church. 
This church was built during the 16th century. It is a church-hall type, characteristic of this era, with a set consisting of three elements: the convent, the church and its niche. Incorporates elements of previous Gothic and Manueline adaptations.
Like with most of the churches in Tavira, the 1755 earthquake caused severe damages to the hospital and the church, and both have been completely rebuilt. A late medieval chapel and a mortuary remained as a survivor of the original church. - in:

Monday, July 25, 2016

Monthly Favorite Surprise RR - June'16

I'm interrested in the War Wars, especially WWII and I like to get cards related to these dark periods of the History. I don't get war related cards that often but in June's RR I got 3!!! The 1st WW cards that I ever received via this monthly RR. What a coincidence. 

Aleksandr Pokryshkin was one of the leading fighter pilots of World War II, Marshal of Soviet aviation and the first and only pilot to be awarded Hero of the Soviet Union during the war. He made a total of 650 sorties, participated in 139 air battles, and has an official record of 59 downed enemy planes. - in:
Card sent by Ira.

Agnieszka also sent a card with a WWII hero. 
Thomas Derrick was an Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest decoration for gallantry "in the face of the enemy" awarded to members of the British and Commonwealth armed forces. In November 1943, during the Second World War, Derrick was awarded the Victoria Cross for his assault on a heavily defended Japanese position at Sattelberg, New Guinea. During the engagement, he scaled a cliff face while under heavy fire and silenced seven machine gun posts, before leading his platoon in a charge that destroyed a further three. - in: wikipedia

© W. Eugene Smith / Magnum Photos
This card was sent from Spain but the cards shows a US Marine demolition team blasting out a cave on Hill 382 during the Iwo Jima Battle in Japan. The card was sent by Yolanda.
The Battle of Iwo Jima (19 February – 26 March 1945) was a major battle in which the U.S. Marines landed on and eventually captured the island of Iwo Jima from the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. The American invasion, designated Operation Detachment, had the goal of capturing the entire island, including the three Japanese-controlled airfields (including the South Field and the Central Field), to provide a staging area for attacks on the Japanese main islands. This five-week battle comprised some of the fiercest and bloodiest fighting of the War in the Pacific of World War II. - in: wikipedia

A lovely card from Zhouzhuang Water Town in China. 
Zhouzhuang lies at the middle between Shanghai and Suzhou, is an ancient town of Kunshan city, Jiangsu province, where abounds with rivers and lakes. It is thought by many to be the best waterside town in China. The ancient town has a history of more than 900 years old with many houses built in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. There are about 100 houses with courtyards, and 60 of them have arch gateways made by carved bricks.
With lakes on four sides, the beauty of Zhouzhuang is specially to be found along the waterside lanes and around a number of the stone bridges. - in:
The card was sent by Twinkle. 

Ansichtskertenverlag Josef Brand
The last of these cards arrived from Germany. Steffi sent a river view from the Bavarian Forest National Park. The park is located in the Eastern Bavarian Forest immediately on Germany's border with the Czech Republic. It was founded on 7 October 1970 as the first national park in Germany. Together with the neighbouring Czech Bohemian Forest the Bavarian Forest forms the largest contiguous area of forest in Central Europe. - in: wikipedia

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Monthly Favorite Surprise RR - May'16

In May I decided to send 5 instead of the 4 cards I sent the previous months. If I sent 5 cards, I got 5 cards too. In May the cards arrived from Ukraine, Russia, and USA. 

On this card from Alupka, a resort city in Crimea, is possible to see a garden inside the Vorontsov Palace and the Ai-Petri Mountain in the background. Ai-Petri is 1234 meters high. Since 1987, a three kilometer Gondola lift, one of the longest in Europe and split into two stages, carries passengers to and from the mountain, providing visitors with excellent views of the surrounding area and the Black Sea. - in: wikipedia
The card was sent by Alyona.

Tatiana sent this beautiful card from Suzdal, one of the oldest russian towns and  the smallest of the Russian Golden Ring towns, with population of just 9978 but a major tourist attraction. The Kremlin with the Cathedral of the Nativity can be seen in the card. 
The Suzdal Kremlin is the oldest part of the Russian city of Suzdal, dating from the 10th century. Like other Russian Kremlins, it was originally a fortress or citadel and was the religious and administrative center of the city. It is most notably the site of the Cathedral of the Nativity.
Together with several structures in the neighboring city of Vladimir, it was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992. - in: wikipedia

 Photo © Kevin Shields
In April Nan sent me a beautiful card from Yosemite N. P. and in May sent a card from another national park, Acadia N. P. 
The cliffside Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse in Acadia National Park, located in the village of Bass Harbor within Tremont, Maine in the United States, marks the entrance to Bass Harbor on the southwestern side of Mount Desert Island. The lighthouse was built of brick in 1858 on a stone foundation, stands 56 feet above mean high water. - in:

James Blank Collection
From Maine to Calfornia with this card sent by Brenda.
Big Sur is a lightly populated region of the Central Coast of California where the Santa Lucia Mountains rise abruptly from the Pacific Ocean. Although it has no specific boundaries, many definitions of the area include the 90 miles (140 km) of coastline from the Carmel River in Monterey County south to the San Carpoforo Creek in San Luis Obispo County, and extend about 20 miles (30 km) inland to the eastern foothills of the Santa Lucias.
The name "Big Sur" is derived from the original Spanish-language "el sur grande", meaning "the big south", or from "el país grande del sur", "the big country of the south". This name refers to its location south of the city of Monterey. The terrain offers stunning views, making Big Sur a popular tourist destination. - in: wikipedia

Photo © Craig Turtle
May's journey ends in Oregon. This great card was sent by Cynthia. 
Mount Hood, located about 50 miles (80 km) east-southeast of Portland, is a potentially active stratovolcano in the Cascade Volcanic Arc of northern Oregon. The peak is home to 12 named glaciers and snowfields. It is the highest point in Oregon and the fourth highest in the Cascade Range.
Mount Hood is considered the Oregon volcano most likely to erupt, though based on its history, an explosive eruption is unlikely. Still, the odds of an eruption in the next 30 years are estimated at between 3 and 7 percent, so the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) characterizes it as "potentially active", but the mountain is informally considered dormant. - in: wikipedia

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Monthly Favorite Surprise RR - April'16

In April I got 4 cards from 4 different countries, Finland; Czech Republic, Belarus and Switzerland. 

Foto: Kalevi Asplund
Pyhä-Luosto National Park is a national park in Lapland, Finland. It was established in 2005 when Finland's oldest national park, Pyhätunturi National Park (established in 1938) was joined to Luosto. This makes Pyhä-Luosto Finland's oldest but at the same time newest national park. The new park covers 142 square kilometres (55 sq mi). The most important features are geological specialities, old forests and wetlands.
The park's base is formed by Finland's southernmost, 12-peak tunturi line. The tunturis are remnants of Alp-like mountains of 2 billion years of age. 200-year-old or older pine tree forests grow on the hills. The highest tunturis are Noitatunturi, 540 m (1,772 ft), and Ukko-Luosto, 514 m (1,686 ft). - in: wikipedia
The card was sent by Minna.

Foto: Jan Stepnicka
Castle cards from Czech Republic are always welcome. This is not a new castle in my collection but its a beautiful card. It was sent by Radana.
Kost is one of the best preserved medieval castles in the Czech Republic and is considered the second most important. Popular legend has it that the castle was given the name Kost, because he was captured more than once, as it was as hard as bone. The origin of the castle dates back to the 13th century and the building was probably started by Benes of Wartenberg, who built a long hall and the tower as a defensive fortress. - in:

Nika sent me a beautiful and look at the stamp's postmark, its a Postcrossing postmark!! 
The Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Borisov, Belarus, was built of red bricks in 1874 by architect P. Merkulov at the place of the wooden Resurrection church, built in 1620 or in 1640 (the church burnt down in 1865 or in 1867).
The temple was built to the honour of God’s Resurrection. This architecture memorial is in retrospective-Russian style with Moscow church architecture styling of the 17th century. It presents a cross-form temple in its basement and has 9 domes. The facades are richly decorated with decorative elements: kokoshniks, arch framing of windows and doors, triangle and semicircular pediments, corner pilasters. The main arch entrance is stressed by a large portal looking as a profile arch positioned at 4 barrel-looking columns. The temple is lit by 2 tiers of windows. - in:

© photoglob Zürich
Grace sent me a card of the swiss capital city.
Wandering through the picture-postcard Old Town, with its provincial, laid-back air, it's hard to believe that Bern (Berne in French) is the capital of Switzerland – but it is, and a Unesco World Heritage Site to boot.
Bern’s flag-festooned, cobbled centre, rebuilt in distinctive grey-green sandstone after a devastating 1405 fire, is an aesthetic delight, with 6km of covered arcades, cellar shops and bars, and fantastical folk figures frolicking on 16th-century fountains. From the surrounding hills, you’re presented with an equally captivating picture of red roofs arrayed on a spit of land within a bend of the Aare River.
In a nutshell, Bern seduces and surprises at every turn. Its museums are excellent, its drinking scene dynamic, its bear park utterly unique, and its locals happy to switch from their famously lilting dialect to English – which all goes to show that there’s more to Bern than bureaucracy. - in:

Friday, July 22, 2016

Monthly Favorite Surprise RR * March'16

I've 4 months of this super nice RR to update. Let's start with March's cards sent from USA and Germany. 

This card is so, so beautiful, I love it. It was sent by Nan.
Bridalveil Fall is one of the iconic waterfalls of Yosemite National Park.
The waterfall 188 metres (617 ft) and is one of the few waterfalls in the park that flows year-round. Even though its drainage is much smaller than that of Yosemite Falls (which doesn't flow year-round), this waterfall has a more lush and shaded drainage which keeps Bridalveil Creek flowing and thus keeps the waterfall flowing. - in:

Photo by R. C. Bishop
Also from the US, "alohagreetings" sent be this card of Steamboat Springs, a city in Colorado. The city is an internationally known winter ski resort destination. The Steamboat Springs tourism industry is highlighted by Steamboat Ski Resort, which is on Mount Werner in the Park Range just east of the town. It also contains the much smaller Howelsen Ski Area. - in: wikipedia

St. Mary's Cathedral in Freiberg, Germany, is a remarkable structure for a town of 40,000 people. The church was founded in the 12th century. In 1386, the church was enlarged, and it became a cathedral in 1480. Just four years after earning cathedral status, the church collapsed in a city fire that destroyed most of Freiberg. It was rebuilt in late Gothic style between 1484 and 1501, creating the Dom St. Marien that exists today. The Reformation reached Freiberg in 1537, and the church has been Protestant ever since.
In addition to being a place of worship, the Dom St. Marien is the final resting place for Duke Moritz (an Elector of Saxony). It houses two organs by Gottfried Silbermann, one of Europe's greatest organ builders in the 18th Century. - in:
The card was sent by Katrin.

Ottawa - Canada

190 kilometers west of Montreal, Ottawa is the capital of Canada and its 4th largest city. It is located in the eastern portion of the province of Ontario, bordering the province of Quebec, on the banks of the Ottawa River, a major waterway that forms the border between Ontario and Quebec.
The card was sent by Jason.

Photo: J. G. Lavoie
On the left side of the image there's Château Laurier and on the right, the Parliament of Canada. 
The hotel is just metres away from some of the capital's most important landmarks including Parliament Hill, the Rideau Canal, the National Gallery of Canada, the Byward Market, the National War Memorial, the U.S. Embassy, and the CF Rideau Centre. Given its proximity to these buildings and the fact that it has served as a home and meeting place for many notable political figures over the years, the hotel has often been referred to as "the third chamber of Parliament". - in: wikipedia

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Montreal - Canada

An unexpected card from Canada sent by dear Marie who spent a long weekend in Montreal with her boyfriend and some postcrossing friends. 

Montreal is the most populous city in Quebec and the second most populous municipality in Canada. Originally called Ville-Marie, or "City of Mary," it is named after Mount Royal, the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city. The city is on the Island of Montreal, which took its name from the same source as the city.
Montreal is one of the most bilingual cities in Quebec and Canada with 56% of the population able to speak both English and French. Montreal is the second largest primarily French-speaking city in the world, after Paris.

© Marcoux Y
Olympic Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium in Canada, located at Olympic Park in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district of Montreal, Quebec. It was built in the mid-1970s as the main venue for the 1976 Summer Olympics.
The stadium is the largest by seating capacity in Canada. After the Olympics, artificial turf was installed and it became the home of Montreal's professional baseball and football teams.
The stadium currently serves as a multipurpose facility for special events (e.g. concerts, trade shows) with a permanent seating capacity of 56,040.
The stadium has not had a main tenant since the Expos left in 2004. With a history of numerous structural and financial problems, it is largely seen as a white elephant.
Incorporated into the north base of the stadium is the Montreal Tower, the world's tallest inclined tower at 175 metres (574 ft). - in: wikipedia

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

US-4100687 & US-4109498

The only thing that these cards have in common, is that both were sent from Texas.

Photo © Richard Stockton
US-4100687, sent by Annie.
When it comes to beaches in USA, Texas isn’t always first-to-mind but its seems that Texas Gulf Coast is actually home to some of the best beaches in America and the region draws millions of visitors. Stretching some 350 miles from South Padre Island & the Rio Grande Valley, all the way to Beaumont & the Louisiana border, this region is renowned for its wildlife & natural beauty, as well as the home of America's space program. 

Photo © Randy Brandon
US-4109498, sent by Jenny.
 Eskimos are indigenous peoples who have traditionally inhabited the circumpolar region from eastern Siberia (Russia), across Alaska (United States), Canada, and Greenland.
There are two main groups that are referred to as Eskimo: Yupik and Inuit. A third group, the Aleut, is related. 
Today, the two main groups of Eskimos are the Inuit of northern Alaska, Canada and Greenland, and the Yupik of Central Alaska. The Yupik comprises speakers of four distinct Yupik languages originated from the western Alaska, in South Central Alaska along the Gulf of Alaska coast, and the Russian Far East.
In Alaska, the term Eskimo is commonly used, because it includes both Yupik and Inupiat, while Inuit is not accepted as a collective term or even specifically used for Inupiat. No universal term other than Eskimo, inclusive of all Inuit and Yupik people, exists for the Inuit and Yupik peoples.
In Canada and Greenland, the term Eskimo has fallen out of favor, as it is sometimes considered pejorative and has been replaced by the term Inuit. - in:

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Cahokia Mounds - USA

 This month the UNESCO list will get bigger again. The 40th session of the World Heritage Committee is being held in Istanbul since 10 to 20 July 2016. So far, we already have 9 new sites and new ones will be added in the next days.

Cahokia Mounds in USA is already a WHS since 1982.

Painting by Lloyd k. Townsend
US-3973627, sent by Joel.
Located in Collinsville, Illinois near the city of St. Louis, this largest pre-Columbian settlement north of Mexico is the pre-eminent example of a cultural, religious, and economic centre of the Mississippian culture (800–1350), which extended throughout the Mississippi Valley and the south-eastern United States. This agricultural society may have had a population of 10,000–20,000 at its peak between 1050 and 1150, which was equivalent to the population of many European cities at that time. It once covered more than 1,600 hectares and included some 120 mounds.

Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site includes 51 platform, ridgetop, and conical mounds; residential, public, and specialized activity areas; and a section of reconstructed palisade, all of which together defined the limits and internal symmetry of the settlement. Dominating the community was Monks Mound, the largest prehistoric earthen structure in the New World. Constructed in fourteen stages, it covers six hectares and rises in four terraces to a height of 30 meters. The mounds served variously as construction foundations for public buildings and as funerary tumuli. There was also an astronomical observatory (“Woodhenge”), consisting of a circle of wooden posts. Extensive professional excavations have produced evidence of construction methods and the social activities of which the structures are further testimony.  - in:
This card was sent by "mysonictruth".