Well, like I said in a previous entry, our postal service is really slow, but today they announced a new decision: They just stopped sending anything to countries in South America, Central America and North America, until December 25th. Their reason is that they need that time to improve the service, although some analysts say that the real reason is that they haven't paid to the air transportation companies. In my opinion, that's a problem that can extend to sending post to other continents.
What's worst about this is that I won't be able to send anything to a bunch of my pals until, at least, December 25th.
I know this blog is about postcards, letters and stamps, but my other hobby is photography. I've been involved into it for about 5 years. I bought my DSLR camera on 2008 (a Sony Alpha 200), and this year I bought a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera (also a Sony, this one a NEX-F3). I was learning by myself until this year, when I took some photography classes at a nice school here in Caracas. I really enjoy taking pictures of nature and city landscapes, but I need to practice portraits.
In these few years with this hobby, I've received many letters in nice envelopes, beautiful paper and a lot of different colors inside, but I'm quite simple when it comes to the letters I write and send: I always use lined paper, most of the time I write with black or blue pen, and I always use white envelopes (basically because here in Venezuela is very hard, almost impossible, to find all of those nice papers that my friends find abroad).
But that will change soon !!! Today I went to a office supply store close to my job, and I found some nice envelopes (not those white envelopes I always use, these are colored) and I also bought some address labels. So my next letters will be a little bit different, I'm quite excited to use those new supplies !!!
Venezuelan postal service (IPOSTEL) is kind of slow, actually, it's very slow. Sometimes, letters take about 2 months to arrive from Europe or the USA (although a couple of months ago I got a letter from the USA 3 weeks after it was sent). And when I get a letter, it's usually a small batch: 2 or 3 letters. Also, we don't have mailboxes where we can drop our letters, instead we need to go to the postal office (there aren't many of them). Another difficult thing: buying stamps to have them at home; instead, you pay at the post office and they paste the stamps on the letters.
Compared to IPOSTEL, USPS (United States Postal Service) is really fast: last month I traveled to Florida, and I sent a postcard to a good friend in Switzerland, and he got it 6 days after I sent it !!! That was a huge surprise for me.
I think it's sad for me, because I really enjoy writing to my pen pals, and sometimes they think that I don't reply quick enough, even when I reply as soon as I get the letters (I always reply within a week, counting from the time I get it). Well, now most of them know how slow is our postal service, so they're very patient when they send letters to me.
Finally I took a lot of pictures of my postcards and stamps, some of them look a little bit blurry (I need a macro lens for my camera, and maybe a little bit more of illumination), but I'm satisfied with them.
I'll start to post them in a random order: some postcards, some stamps, no chronological order.
A few years ago, while living in the United States of America, I had the chance to meet people from many different countries: South Korea, Germany, France, Colombia, Japan, Indonesia, Taiwan, Saudi Arabia, and of course the United States. It was a totally new experience for me: living in a new country, with a different culture, and with an English level not so high (I could understand almost everything, but it was quite hard for me to speak even a word). Fortunately, I was quite lucky: my host "family" was a single guy, a little above my age, so it was a good way to practice my language skills; also, I was living with another two guys: one from South Korea and another one from Germany (one of my best friends, almost my cousin). Besides those two nice guys living with me, I met a bunch of great people at the school, specially three girls (one from South Korea, one from Indonesia, and another one from Japan), and a very kind guy from Taiwan. Also I had the chance to have one of the bests (if not the best) teachers at the language school. Living for a few months surrounded with that cultural mix, made me become interested in learning about new cultures and other people's experiences.
After coming back to Venezuela, I used to keep in touch with my closest friend using email, but suddenly I felt that it wasn't so personal, it was kind of cold (although it's something instantaneous), so I decided to ask them for their postal addresses and write them letters or send a nice postcard. That's how I discovered snail mail, and the next step was to look for more people interested in learning about new cultures and wanting to exchange mail in this lovely and old fashioned way.
So this is my blog, here I'll post a few histories about my way through this great hobby (although it isn't a popular hobby among guys), and I'll share pictures of postcards, letters and stamps that I've received in this very few years.