I was talking to a woman from OCAD University in her 20s today about postcards. She says that she hasn’t sent a (print) postcard in at least five years. She said that she she just sends an email or posts a photo to Instagram or Facebook when she’s travelling.
We discussed whether postcards were going to die out. It certainly would seem that way – but I’m here to argue that postcards are the best souvenir from a trip and that we all should keep sending them!
You may think you don’t have time to do a postcard, but below is a postcard I bought and mailed during a short stop on a guided tour of a city in Venezuela. It was a day-trip from a cruise we were on, so there was no free time. But we saw a post office and went to action in just a few minutes and had sent five postcards.
To date, it remains one of the Collection’s very few South American specimens. And what an interesting specimen it is:
Here’s the back side:
“Yanomami Indians practicing the “yopo” ritual” [I had no idea what this image referred to but it appears to be a way that indigenous people inhaled a narcotic substance.]
“Hola from Venezuela! We’re on our whistle stop tour and 20 minutes to go pearl shopping. Instead, you get a postcard. I even missed free rum samples to do this. Ciao”
Canadians love vacationing in Florida and I have a vault of postcards to prove it. As much as we love to get away at this time of year to the sun and sand, we equally seem to love sending a postal thumbed nose to those we leave behind still suffering in the freeze and frost. Hence this postcard that recently arrived:
These “you vs. me” Florida postcards are almost as ubiquitous as an ocean sunset postcard. Our insufferable winters make people do desperate things after they escape.
Here’s the backside of the postcard:
“Don’t you wish you were here, today’s temperature is X!”
“Hi! We had a good drive to Key West! No snow! The weather has been great, not too hot. The new house should be here in two weeks but we won’t be able to move him in until the interior work is done. Not much else new for now.”
Earlier this week, I blogged about a new arrival to the Collection with a unique appliqué on front – a fridge magnet. Appliqué postcards have something added to the paper postcard as a gimmick. Originally, this was often bows, ribbons, or fabric. But there are some other unique items glued on.
Such as this antique postcard from my great-grandfather’s collection:
and soon there will be
No Bacca [tobacco]
A Piece of
will finish the job”
I don’t get this postcard – so please share your thoughts or interpretation below. I’m not sure if the twine is supposed to represent rope (for hanging someone) or poop (for throwing at someone). But it certainly is an interesting use of an appliqué.
The postcard was never sent and the back offers no clues:
The backside is an example of an undivided back and I love the font on the word “Postcard”. But what is most remarkable, is that the twine appliqué has stayed on this long – for over a hundred years now.
A friend came across a cache of postcards that she neglected to send from her various travels, so she has been sending them to me from her home in England. This one recently arrived – purchased from an earlier trip to Turkey:
The image is of the calcite natural hot springs of Pamukkale, Turkey, a UNESCO heritage site. At first glance, it looks like snow and ice but it’s actually quite hot there.
I thought this temperature deception was fitting considering that here where I am, in Toronto, it’s nominally spring and would normally be sunny, warm weather. Yet in reality we are continuing to suffer from a winter that won’t end. Only a couple days ago the snow finally started to melt here, otherwise it looked just like the postcard.
Here’s the reverse side:
“Turkey! Went there in 2007. Loved these hote springs (yes, that water is warm not cold and the best is at the top of the hills the warm Perrier like bubbly water is filled with Roman Ruins.”
I was excited when I received this postcard in the mail a couple days ago:
It’s the theatre in Taliesin West in Scottsdale, Arizona – built by famed U.S. architect Frank Lloyd Wright. It’s not Taliesin -that Taliesin is open for tours in Wisconsin.
Taliesin West seems beautiful and interesting too and the theatre has its own history, as the back details:
“The Cabaret Theater. Taliesin West is the international headquarters for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation including the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives, School of Architecture and Taliesin Architects.”
“Apparently Frank Lloyd Wright loved movies and performances and had his ‘apprentices’ read ‘slave labour’ build this extremely cool Berlin-like cave cabaret theatre.”
Who needs email, telephones, or radio when the postal service can delivery postcards across the seas in less than 24 hours?! (The Internet we need for this blog, of course.)
A great patron of the Collection mailed the item below on Monday, February 3rd at 4:30 pm near London, England. I picked up the postcard the next day when I got home around 4:00 pm, Toronto time. The time zone change worked in the postal services’ favour – but still that’s oversea delivery in a day!
I have experienced (very rarely) local delivery that fast, but never international!
Suitably, the item was about a revolution in communication speed – the telegraph:
Here’s the back side of the postcard:
“Hi, [X] got a bunch of postcards from his work archives. This is my favourite. Apparently the top hat was for storing his tools!”
“Front – Birmingham telegraph engineer, 1860. The electric telegraph was invented in the Uk in 1837.
Discover more at www.bt.com/archives“