Mostly postal but art and other things of interest too.
Come and visit.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Postal in Prague

Fall was an especially nice time to be in Prague and seeing all the gold and orange leaves and the orange postboxes.
This one was outside the Prague Postal Museum.
No, they didn't allow photos and everyone was watching me closely. (I can't imagine why. Do I look sneaky?)

Yes, they did have a shop.

Some Prague Post Boxes came in pairs like this...

And here are some triplets.

If you're going out all day to hunt down post boxes and Postal Museums and go to the flea market, it is a good idea to have a BIG breakfast first.
They don't mess around when it comes to breakfast at the Cafe Louvre in Prague.
If three eggs with bacon and OJ isn't enough, you get apple cake with meringue on top too.
And, no, I did not eat all that...

But really, cake for breakfast? What's wrong with that?

Prague seemed to have more graffiti than the others places we visited.  I liked that bird.

I love the pink of this old stone with the the grey and the orange pop of the PO box.

I can't read Czech but I do know what posta means.....

Another PO that doesn't allow photos. This is killing me.

Well, there is always the outside to photograph.

The PO boxes are orange but the Postal trucks are blue. This one pulled up in front of a little PO and there was a frenzy of picture taking, much to the amusement of the driver. I amuse quite a number of people.
Even myself.


Lunch time!
Loads of outdoor food venders all over Prague. Very tempting.  

I jumped out of order with this post -- after Russia, we went to Krakow, but since that post isn't ready I thought I'd show you this one instead.
And I didn't have time to photograph the haul of ephemera from the flea market in Prague you want to see it?
I'll work on all that next.

The worktable is covered with stuff, the food frenzy (here in the US) has begun, the travel journal is being worked on, I have about a million projects going on...
And, what are all of you guys doing?
Do Tell.

Happy Thanksgiving to the USA readers
Happy Mail Day to all.

(and eat pie)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

From Russia with Love

St. Petersburg Main Post Office

I don't think it was a coincidence that our hotel was just  about one and half blocks from the Main PO in St. Petersburg.
And get this -- the post offices in Russia are open SEVEN days a week and twenty-four hours a day.

I could go in the middle of the night!

Take a peek....looks promising.

Like many of the buildings in St Petersburg, the post office was vast and  quite busy too.
I was particularly partial to the green walls. And the wooden trim.

You can sit on a nice wooden bench to wait for your turn...

People were filling out forms and writing letters and mailing parcels and buying phone cards....and some people were walking around taking lots of photos and picking up as many free postal forms as she possibly could.....just sayin".......

They had a really nice display of stamps, first day covers and envelopes.

Love those blue post boxes!

See the guard sitting there on the left? He gave me carte blanche to photograph. Can you believe it?
I have been kicked out of so many PO's for taking photos and in Russian the guard said
"no problem".
And next to him is a door where all the stamp collectors hang out and buy stamps...I mustered up my courage and walked up to the woman working there and handed her my little "Postal Love" zine and the request to buy stamps all printed out thanks to Google-translate...

and it worked!
She helped me pick out some real beauties using a lot of sign language and now I am the proud owner of some great Russian postage stamps.

After the PO, my intrepid husband took me on the subway to a flea market. And a very out-of-the-way flea market I assure you...absolutely NO tourists to be seen...

After the subway we walked some streets, saw some delightful street vendors selling  food and I might have torn off off a bunch of those ads on that pole in travel journal needed to be filled....

It is kind of fun not being able to read anything...I loved the way the writing looked.

It rained the night before and the ground was muddy and it was freezing cold -- about 30 degrees.
Really not the most pleasant conditions to be at the flea market but it was worth it!

Too bad I couldn't fit this old typewriter in my don't see too many typers with Cyrillic  keys here in San Francisco...

Look at those keys!

After all that we needed a nice hot bowl of borscht and some pickled cabbage and beets to warm us would too if you had been outside freezing to death. And getting a little over-excited. (hence, the glass of wine)
Russian Ephemera
You might be over-excited too if you found all this paper ephemera -- photos, identity cards,

                                        Envelopes with letters inside (too bad I can't read them)

Packs of old currency
(that is going to be fun to collage with!)

Now I just have to figure out what I'm going to do with all the ephemera, stamps, postal forms etc I picked up....
Any ideas? I am thinking of little booklets using the postal forms and Postal ATC's for each country I visited.
I am slowly catching up on my out-going mail. It hasn't been a great incoming week for me but I am hoping things improve soon.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

I'm Back! And I've got Mail. And Photos.


I'm back and finally shaken off most of the jet lag. Thought I'd check in and say hello and share some photos from the trip.
And -- there was lovely incoming mail waiting for me on my return home to SF.
Thanks everyone!
(Too many to name but Dori, Connie, Polly, Sarah, Kelly, Millicent, Test Tower, Cuan, Vizma, Melissa, Kathy, Red, Maureen are only a few....)

The only small problem being that I know owe everybody mail..... patience you guys...
I'm working on it.

From Miss Polly -- isn't this a great card?

I got "Moosed" as Charity wrote on the...well...moose....This guy was waiting on my doorstep and he flew in all the way from Alaska.


St Petersburg, Russian Republic
Church of the Spilt Blood
I can tell you I stopped right in my tracks when I saw this baby. One of the coolest buildings I've ever seen. Inside and out.

St Petersburg, Russian Republic
The vast scale of some of the Russian buildings is really amazing. And being there in October the crowds have gone, as you can see. We saw no tourists and no Americans.
But lots of lovely, friendly, helpful Russian people.

It just seemed like there was beauty everywhere we looked on this trip. And we were looking UP a lot. The ceilings were amazing.

Krakow, Poland
Another terrific city with a great big market square. We stayed right on this square which was filled with outdoor cafes. There was a centuries old market arcade to inspect and lots of outdoor venders selling local products and food.
My kind of place...oh yeah...

Our hotel lobby. I loved the real candles all lit and up and glowing every night in the lobby and on the floors. I'm sure here in the USA there are some sort of fire laws against it but it was

Some baked goods to sample. And, sample we did.

ST Petersburg
These dolls were absolutely everywhere -- in all four countries we visited.

And these hand painted eggs were very popular as well. These are real eggs but in Poland we bought hand painted wooden eggs.
I figured the wooden eggs had a much better chance of making it home.

The New York Cafe in Budapest. I have never seen anything like this in New York.
I just couldn't get over these old, magnificent cafes....

After walking miles every day I could also eat dessert without any guilt every day.

Prague, Czech Republic
I hate to say it but there are bookstores and more bookstores in all these countries.
Made me more than a little jealous since we have lost so many here in SF.

Prague, Czech Republic

OK, I may have had a little too much fun. I admit I didn't want to come back home. The cities were all lovely and the people kind and friendly.
And there were flea markets and Postal Museums and a fabulous Stamp Museum and really cute post boxes all over.....I have stories to tell you.
But first I have to work on catching up with all the mail I owe everybody because as you all know


and I haven't gotten any the last few days since I owe everyone. Sigh.
So, what do you think, are you all going to book a flight to eastern Europe?
Not sure yet?
Wait till you see the Postal Pictures coming up soon.
And BTW, if not eastern Europe, who among you are coming in February for the fabulous
Ex Postal Facto
mail art event? I have heard a lot of rumors of people coming from near and far and I highly suggest it. This is something you won't want to miss. Check out the link on the sidebar.
Hope to see a lot of you in February in SF.
Stay tuned!


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