Saturday, 30 March 2013

What are the odds?

I forgot to mention this in my previous posts that someone approached me inquiring about golden eagle coins

Source: CartoonStock.com
Okay, I was taken aback by this request. I find it weird even. Gold coins? In Cambodia? I do know that a lot of Cambodians prefer gold than cash but I haven't got a clue as to who collects golden coins in Cambodia. I wouldn't dare ask around, you know.

This is probably the oddest request I have received so far. Or was it just a scam? Or a spam? I don't have a way of knowing. So, I politely told him that should I ever come across some people who are into this stuff, I'll let him know. 

How about you? What was the oddest, weirdest, strangest request have you encountered while engaging in your respective hobbies?

People postcards

Here's some more postcards with views that are not Angkor Wat or temples. Glad I found more of them in my box.

Boys and their buffalo. Nothing more fun than riding a buffalo in rural Cambodia.
Cyclo! It's a Cambodian version of a rickshaw, similar to the ones in Vietman.  Slow. It could take you to your destination. Eventually. Meanwhile, enjoy the view while riding a cyclo.

Hilltribe members. They are living in the northeastern part of the country. Very interesting culture and traditions.


Ahhh, this is my favourite. A girl on a dug-out boat and picking lotus flowers. You wouldn't believe how beautiful a pond full of blooming lotuses is.

Yummy tarantula

As I was listening to an acoustic music CD, a friend of mine who I was chatting with online asked me if there are other postcards from Cambodia aside from the usual Angkor Wat and other ancient temples that I've been sending out. Of course, I felt a bit offended. She sounded a bit snotty. I told her there are other kinds of views but they are more expensive and limited.

Now that she flagged my attention, I went to check my postcards box to see if I have indeed in my possession some non-Angkor Wat, non-temple, postcards.

I was happy to find this:
Postcard moment.


Scary? Hell, yeah!
I bet all hell will break loose if ever I'd encountered one crawling on my limbs. Just as I had this thought, the music I was listening to rose to a somewhat dramatic. Sounded like a six-year-old-kid playing Fender Stratocaster guitar center. Hah.

With that as background music, I'm giving you a bit of info  about this postcard.

Here's the deal. There's a town in Cambodia, halfway between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, called Kampong Cham. Buses from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap, and vice versa, stop here for a short time for rest and food and to pick up some more passengers. This is also the place where the popular a'ping or local tarantulas come from and offered/sold as snacks. Along with crickets, termites, grasshoppers, and many other bugs, they  are considered a delicacy in Cambodia and neighbouring countries. 

Some other enterprising locals offer live tarantulas as props for photograph. For a fee, you can pose for the camera with the tarantula.

So there you have it. Friends, yes, this postcard is for swap but I'm not currently entertaining private exchanges.  You can see from my side bar the list of countries where my postcards are from. If you're country is not in it,  then, by all means, please drop me a line.

What I'm up to

Sorry for the absence of posts here.

This is a cartoon strip from Manjul.com.
What's happening in India is definitely happening here in Cambodia.
 I live in an area north of Phnom Penh where the power goes out everyday, six-eight hours a day. Sometimes two times a day for additional 2-3 hours. It makes it difficult to update blog and do work, especially for people like me who depend on the Internet for my part-time job. It is sooooo effing hot; I could hardly get a thing done even if it means having extra hours off the Internet. 

The message on the illustration on the right very much applies to where I live. There is no need to join the Earth Hour event because we observe it several times daily. Funny but very accurate and true!

Anyways, I try to while the time by arranging and re-arranging stuff at home. The other day, I rummaged my closet and segregated those that are still "wearables" from the ones that I can give away (still wearables but don't fit me anymore). I even saw my old yoga gear and I was debating whether I should put it to the give away bin or keep them. I decided to keep them :D 

 The next to-do thing in my list - is to re-arrange my postcards collection. They are currently in order, arranged alphabetically by country. However, if my mood is good, I'll be arranging them according to themes. Which is really more complicated, isn't it? I still have a boxful of unsorted Cambodia postcards that I have kept for so long. I had to beg off from private swaps because I could not afford the stamps at the moment. However, if swappers have something new or unique to offer me, I'll be glad to consider :)

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Photo Source: Manjul.com

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Midweek Mail: Surprises!

I knew there's always a good reason to drop by the Post Office and check my mailbox. Call it intuition, yeah, could be. But what happened is that I had a good feeling about going to the Post Office last Friday. Since it wasn't in our scheduled errands, my husband was a bit irked that I asked him to drive a little further, to the Post Office. Unscheduled trips like this annoy my husband since we had to make a detour to the Post Office which is out of the way of the spare parts shop area where we were headed for a single piece of eye bolt that's missing in his tool box.

Turned out my instinct was right. Two postcards came unexpectedly from two good friends and the parcel from Turkey arrived! Happy head here.

Two postcards, a French Opera postcard sent by Dan who was in Paris; and the beautiful St. Servatius bridge in Maastricht, the Netherlands from fellow Postcrosser, Stasele. Thanks to you both. They made my day!

These contain beautiful yarns from Turkey. A friend and I share this purchase. You won't believe how much we bought these...  :)
 

Sunday Stamps 084: International Women's Day

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This week's theme calls for stamps that fit the theme "abstract".
Quite challenging, I must say. I found one which I think fits in, if stretched a little bit. Here is a stamp from Spain issued in March 2011, highlighting the changes and progress made in the country towards  recognition of equality for women in all aspects of life.


It's been more than a century since the world first celebrated the International Women's Day every year. However, the present situation all over the world still reflects discrimination and inequality against women. But still, a lot has  changed and the women are continuing the fight.

In Spain in 2007, for instance, a law was passed on this subject compelling companies to adopt measures to prevent discrimination. To encourage and acknowledge the work of companies committed to the Ley de Igualdad (Equality Act), a distinctive seal is awarded to those who stand by the application of equality in their workplace, organizational models, services, products and advertising. Their logo, an abstract design, and their motto, "Equality in Work", feature in this stamp.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Postcard Friendship Friday 085: The footbridge of Saint Servatius

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I've been missing Postcard Friendship Friday for -- how many consecutive weeks now? I can't remember. Sorry, friends. Feeling a bit lethargic in this sizzling hot weather.

Yes, it is summertime again here and, as expected, we are experiencing frequent power cuts daily, including evenings. The supply of electricity is not enough to keep up to the demands of the city. Last night, while we were having dinner, the power went out again, hence, the candle-dinner, lol. Throughout our dinner, our conversation ended with a decision to find aa rechargeable batteries in the shops, and purchase them, for our torches and other emergency light sources.

So, a bit late again but here is my PFF entry. It came all the way from the Netherlands sent by fellow Postcrosser, Stasele.

If you could see the blue arrow pointing to a very tiny building at the end of the bridge, Stasele said  it is a postcards and souvenir shop where she bought this card :) Thank you, Stasele. 

It shows a panoramic view of the Meuse River and the footbridge of Sint Servaasbrug (Saint Servatius). It is a beautiful 13th century arched footbridge that links Maastricht's Binnenstad district on the west bank of the Meuse to the Wyck district on the east bank. It was built after the original bridge built by the Romans collapsed due to heavy weight from a large procession killing 400 people. 

Stasele wrote at the back of the postcard that the Meuse River is their equivalent of the Mekong River. She also said that she crosses this bridge, on her bicycle, every day to work and that the bridge is only open to pedestrians and cyclists. It must be nice to be able to cycle to work and cross the bridge without any other four-wheel vehicles. I like cycling myself but with the recent increase in the number of vehicles and the increase in road accidents, I decided not to, for safety reasons. There's just too much idiots driving around Phnom Penh these days.

Stasele and I met here in Phnom Penh in December of last year while she and her family were in Phnom Penh for the Cambodia-leg of their Asian holiday. 

P.S. Interested in Maastricht Food 101?  Here's a great postcard showing assorted Maastricht bread intended to tourists and probably expat residents. Also from Stasele.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Sunday Stamps 083: Italy's national colours and symbols on stamps

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From Italy, I have two stamps that came in recently. The postcard will be featured later this week.



The stamp on the left is a definitive stamp issued in 2011, if I am not mistaken. It features envelope taking off, leaving behind a trail formed by the colours of the Italian flag. At the top is the Poste Italiane logo...and the word ITALIA and the denomination complete the stamp. The map of Italy is actually  not part of the stamp; it is printed on the postcard. It made it look like the envelope is flying away from Italy, representing the mails that sent from the country :)

On the right hand is a stamp categorised by Poste Italiane as an alti-velori, or high-value, definitive stamp. Two squares inside a rectangular frame whose vertical edges are decorated with intertwined sections of ribbon supported by a bar, with the word “ITALIA” on the bottom edge. In the top square on the left, the profile of a woman wearing a towered crown, and on the right, the Italian Republic’s coat-of-arms. In the bottom square, the denomination “1,00” superimposed on the “€” symbol of the single European currency, set against a background of geometric motifs. (Source)
 
Images by Freepik