Friday, February 26, 2010

Ski Jumping, Austria

While the Winter Olympics are still going on, a nice cover from Austria from one of my former Austrian penpals....

the stamp issued in 1996, represents Ski jumping held at Tauplitz/Bad Mitterndorf, which back in 1996 was the host of Ski Jumping World Cup, held at the Kulm Ski Flying Hill.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

470th Anniversary of Preveze Naval War and Naval Forces Day, Turkey

I wish I had envelopes like this from many other far i have them only from Turkey and Russia.

And the great envelope is accompanied with a great stamp too, from an issue of two stamps from 2008, in order, as the title says, to commemorate the 470 years of the Preveze Naval War. The stamp presents the design of the first national warship, a Milgem class corvette, F-511 TCG, The Heybeliada.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Spa Autoraces, Belgium

Due to the fact i had many Belgian penpals back in time, I also have a lot of lovely Belgian covers....this is one of the many favourites...

In 1996 the Belgian post issued 4 stamps in order to commemorate the 100 years since racing has taken place on the Spa Francorchamps circuit. All stamps have a value of 16 Belgian francs. Here on the cover, my former penpal Lies, used two of those, showing Ferrari 330P from 1967 (the left stamp) and Alfa Romeo P2 from 1925 (the right stamp). Lovely!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Development of the Railway, Yugoslavia

This is one of the most precious and greatest postal items I own....shouldnt be hard to guess why!

Its a booklet of stamps...on the subject of RAILWAYS!!! Just A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!
It was issued back in the now distant 1998 in the back then Yugoslavia, so you could call it a rarity too :)
On the upper picture you can see the front and the back side of the booklet, while on the bottom one, you can see the booklet from the inside.
The booklet contains 6 stamps, all with a single value of 2.50 dinars, while the booklet itself cost 15 dinars.

"The appearance of the railway is one of the most important events of the 19th century and it represents the turning point not only in the history of the traffic, but also in the history of the whole society. The most important elements of the railway, the iron road - the gage and the steam engine were known much earlier but it was the most famous English engineer, George Stivenson who succeeded i uniting all those elements in one functional totality.
The first railway in the world was put into circulation on 27.09.1825, between Stockton and Darlington in England. The first Stivenson's locomotives attained the velocity of 18km/h and they could pull the trains of weight of around 100 tons. but it was only the beginning of an incredible development. Around the middle of the 19th century the fastest locomotives passed the limit of dreams of 100 km/h. The culmination of development of steam locomotives was achieved by the years of thirty of this century when in England they reached the speed of 202 km/h. In this period the most powerful steam locomotives of all times were constructed in America. They pulled easily the trains of weight of over 6000 tons. The inventions of the electric and diesel motors were the base for the construction of the more effective electric and diesel locomotives. After the Second World War, these locomotives replaced almost completely the popular steam locomotives in the traffic. The most impressive event, after the construction of the first railway for great speed in the world in Japan in 1964 was the development of the electric traction. Big trains called "bullets" ran on this railway by the speed  of 210 km/h. The railways of this kind are being built in many countries last years. French excel in this field with their famous train TGV which achieved a new world record of 515 km/h.
The railway employees in our country always tried to keep pace with the development of the railway. The experiments on the aerodynamic locomotives for great speed were made in our country way back between the two world wars. Nowadays, the construction of the railways for great speed is also planned on all major directions in our country and the first works have already begun.
Motifs on the stamps represent development of the railway in the continuity."

- from inside the booklet

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Vancouver 2010 Olympics, Canada

There is no better time to post this than today!

the miniature sheet was issued regarding the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, Canada, that begin today and will last until 28th February. In the sheet the 5 different stamp designs are presented, among which the 3 Official Olympic Mascots, Miga - the Sea Bear, Sumi - the Thunderbird and Quatchi - the Sasquatch.

None of the three mascots actually exist in real life: Miga the Sea Bear is a combination of an orca and a sea otter. Sumi, the Paralympic mascot, is a Thunderbird but looks more like a bear with wings.
And Quatchi is the first Sasquatch in history to actually make an appearance before human beings.

I doubt ill be able to catch much of the Olympics (lots of work + bad time zone), but however it is more than great to own this mini sheet.

Too all those that are gonna be following the broadcasts, enjoy it and let the best ones win!

Friday, February 12, 2010

UNICEF, Sharjah & Dependencies

Something from my old collections....

In 1970 Sharjah and the dependencies (which included Kalba, Khor Fakkan, and Dibbah), issued a lovely set of stamps on the subject of UNICEF with Paintings of Children. The whole set consists of 18 stamps, and unfortunately, I only own 9 of those, or to be more precise, I only have the 5 dh ones, which were intended for regular postage. The other 9 stamps in the set have different values, raging from 20dh to 3 rl, intended for air mail. 
The paintings are from famous artists like Goya, Renoir, Murillo etc. 
 The titles of these paintings are as followed, starting from top...left to right:

- The Dance, Watteau  
- Don Sebastian de Bonabon, Goya
- Children eating grapes and melons, Murillo
- Children playing with dices, Murillo
- Princess Margareta Theresia, Velasquez
- Julie Manet with cat, Renoir
- Portrait of a child, Rubens
- Little Peasant o balcony, Murillo
- The little fruit merchant, Murillo

It would be more than great if anyhow I could get the rest of the stamps in the set, though I find it rather unbelievable.

As for opened its own post office On 10 July 1963, and began to issue its stamps and postal stationery. Sharjah and its dependencies joined the UAE on 2 December 1971, but it continued to issue its own stamps. On 31 July 1972, the UAE assumed full postal responsibilities. Nevertheless, Sharjah continued to use its own stamps until the issuance of the first UAE definitive series on 1 January 1973. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

75th Anniversary of the Birth of Y.A. Gagarin, Russia

This is one of my most special and most favourite covers. Reasons....a bunch

This stamp was issued in 2009 in order to commemorate Gagarin's birthday, who if he was alive, would have turned 75....sad to see what a short life he had (born 1934 - died 1968)...a one that ended in tragic death.
I dont know if its just me, but this stamp just radiates with some warmth,and thats why i love it was sent from such a dear friend of mine, who always uses such nice and different dear Anastasia.
And im more than thankful that she included the vignette too...makes it so special!

lets not neglect the small stamp below, which is a definitive issued in 2002 in a set of four stamps representing architecture, and this is "Oranienbaum Chinese Palace". Its also a self-adhesive one.

Monday, February 8, 2010

60 Years of the Philatelic Society in Macedonia

Well, I thought that this would be the most appropriate way to make the REAL inauguration of this blog (leaving aside the intro post).

29th of January was a commemorative day since it was the 60th anniversary of the Macedonian Philatelic Society, and due to that they published this commemorative envelope which could have been bought at the philately on the actual date with the special postmark of course.

It was designed by one famous Macedonian artist, Živko A. Popovski, who mainly paints flowers, and on this envelope, the Macedonian flag is symbolized (the red and the yellow colour).
Well, since it had a special postmark, I had to grab this and send it to myself (sending it on any other day wouldnt have been possible, neither it would have made any sense....). And it arrived, safe and sound in exactly 4 days, which compared to the postcard, is an improvement.
I just dont like it that they didnt issue a special stamp would have been MUCH MUCH better, instead using some "left-in-stock" ones (it was issued in 1999 in a set of 4 stamps)....I guess they used this one coz of the flower (since it relates to what this man mainly paints).
Unfortunately, if you wanted to send some of these abroad, you had to add other totally random stamps (depending whats available) quite a disappointing point, but still...i preferred to have it than not have it at all, since 60 year anniversaries dont happen every day....I only dont know why it is "60" and not "50" which would make more sense.

On 31st January there was also a meeting held at the Philatelic Society....nice event, where probably I was the youngest one...I also got a signed picture from the above mentioned Mister, who had brought some of his work to be shared with the fellow philatelists.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Some sort of an intro....

Well, finally, after so much wondering, thinking, negotiating...I decided to create a new blog dedicated to philately no postcards :)

What made me make this decision......well, for a long while now I've been looking at all the letters I had received throughout the years and which have such great stamps on them, but which I realized, would never get to see the light of day, and that sort of made me sad...coz there are some extraordinary ones there, I decided to create another blog where I would show only covers, stamps, FDC's, mini/souvenir sheets and tell small stories that are behind them, but i PROMISE i wont go into useless ramblings as I do with my Postcards' blog....I will save those for my Postcards' Blog still :D
I have already posted there some covers when postcards came inside an envelope...I will still re-post those here, since some of them are just way too beautiful and are worth to be shown.

Im not sure how often I will be able to make updates here but it certainly wont be more than one cover a whenever I have the chance I will pick something from my collection or something I will receive, and will post it here. So will just take it spontaneously, with no pressures imposed or anything....the main point is to enjoy it, right? :)))

On the right side of the blog you can actually see a list of the themes im interested in...I know that like every other philatelist, I should narrow it down, but I just cant...there are such wonderful issues out there and so many things im interested in in real life and which fascinate me, that it is just impossible to take something out.
So, from now on instead of postcards, you can also send me covers and mint stamps and such...however, you may still want to check with me first if I already have something or no....

I will also create a box for Wanted Stamps, where you can see what I am in a hunt for, and in case you can help me with it, I would be more than thankful and delighted :)

I will make my first post here as soon as possible....but in the meantime, I will leave it open for suggestions and ideas and critics....

the template was the best one I could have found which fitted the purpose of  the blog...Im not too happy with so much purple, but Ill live with it...I guess that ones I start posting all those covers, it will become more vibrant and colourful :)

well....that would be it....thanks a lot in advance for the attention you may give to this place in the future, and as always, your contribution in any way is more than welcome.

If you are interested in Macedonian stamps, just let me know and I will check what can be found....however, please note that the EUROPA stamps are almost equally to non-existent, but Ill leave that story for some other time :)