Friday, 31 May 2013

Postcrossing – The First Card

Postcards Exchange

Postcrossing is a project/website that allows people to randomly exchange postcards all across the globe, for free – “well, almost free!” – i.e. no extra cost besides the cards and stamps you have to buy in order to be able to send your own.

The main idea is that if you send a postcard, you will receive one back from another registered Postcrosser somewhere in the world, but not the same person that you sent your own card to.

(For details about how it works, click the link at the top of this post to the Postcrossing website.)

Friend and fellow blogger Scriptor Senex in England has been writing enthusiastically about the fun of postcrossing for over a year now, and more recently I noticed that Doreen had joined too. I’ve been thinking about it for a while but finally decided a couple of weeks ago.

Since 15 May I’ve sent eleven cards off out into the world and today I received my first one back:

Thatched house in Süderdeich, North Frisia
Thatched roof cottage in Süderdeich, North Frisia (postcard)

I do not have the ambition to blog every card received but I decided to wait to write about this at all until I had received my first card (and then I would). So I was delighted when it dropped in today and turned out to be such a lovely one and absolutely blogworthy! :)

I put a few different suggestions on my PC profile and doors/windows one of them, since they were always among my favourites; so it was very fitting that the first card I received through postcrossing had both! Many thanks to Hanna in Germany! (who is not likely to read this, as I have not linked my blog to my PC profile; but I did sent her a thank you message via the website when registering the card as received)

What made me decide to join was really all the stamps I found while going through my father’s study after he died. In the past he collected stamps and it turned out he continued to subscribe to new releases long after he’d lost the energy to ‘do’ anything with them when they arrived (like organize them into albums etc).

So I took home all such stamps that I found  (i.e. the ones from the last decade or so that had not been put into albums) and put them in a drawer of my own… Then recently I sat down and started sorting them out according to value rather than any other system; and realised I had A LOT that could be used for foreign postage.

As in my opinion stamps were made to travel, and I also quite enjoy buying postcards but feel the same about those (i.e. that they were made to travel) – and at the same time email (and blogging) seems to have taken over most of my regular correspondence these days – well, Postcrossing seemed like the answer. Let the stamps go travelling and collect the recieved postcards instead :) … I think that suits me better!

Question: Do you collect anything? What?


  1. Never heard of this, but it looks SCADS of fun! I may even have a look into it. I have saved all the stamps you sent me. I use to collect stamps when I was much younger, but found it to be too boring and decided to ride around with Phil and get into trouble instead. You got a REAL winner with this first one! It is splendid. and how fun to collect them all, and you get a look at other places...I AM going here to check this out!!!!

    1. My dad tried to get me interested in stamp-collecting when I was very young but I never took to it either. Let me know if you do join, and I'll give you my postcrossing-ID.

  2. that is a beautiful card and looks just like something you would have photographed. have fun postcrossing..and stamp collecting...

  3. Through John's blog, I am familiar with the idea of postcrossing, too, but I don't think I'll sign up, even though I love getting "snail mail" letters and postcards. Very good idea to use the stamps left by your father in this way!
    The card is beautiful; I've been to Norddeich (which can't be too far from Süderdeich) and Husum several times and find it a beautiful area.

    You could probably say I collect Harry Potter books (collection complete), Star Trek movies (collection incomplete) and Agatha Raisin books (collection complete). Other than that, I do not really collect things, since I strive to have little "stuff" - I just love my empty surfaces :-)

    1. I have the Harry Potter books too of course, and a few other short series of books, and some favourite TV series complete on DVD as well; and there are some authors or categories of books or kinds of music etc that I have collected more of than others through the years. I don't have as many empty surfaces as you but I don't like "clutter" either. Postcards don't take up all that much space though... And I'll probably cut down when (eventually) I begin to run out of stamps! ;)

  4. What a nice idea! I didn't know Postcrossing till right now, and your post made me very curious about it.

    there are moments when I really hate to write and receive emails, because they are so digital ;-)
    nothing to be touched, nothing that smells somehow, nothing real to remember to keep somewhere.

    at the same time, my "real" postbox is empty too often - only bills and advertising letters coming in, almost no personal mail any more.

    I'd love to receive real postcards from all over the world - and send some, too, of course.

    Thanks for the hint!

    1. I'm not able to write very much by hand any more so I'm basically mostly grateful for the digital evolution... But a real postcard now and then makes a nice change. (Too much advertising is a nuisance whichever way it comes!)

  5. In my younger days, I had pen pals all over the world, and it was always nice to receive letters and cards from such far-flung places. Back then I also collected stamps and that made it even more interesting.
    I like the idea of postcrossing, and I always enjoy reading Scriptor Senex's posts on his hobby, but I don't think I'd be able to keep up like he does.

  6. Although I don't actually set out to collect anything I do have most of the postcards I have ever received. When I said that I didn't collect anything CJ pointed out that I had well over a thousand CDs and a wall and a loft full of books. However I don't count music and books as collecting. Do you?

    1. I basically agree with you there GB. When it comes to books and music I tend to only count is as proper collecting if for example you are collecting rare first editions, or anything to do with a certain author or era, or every recording by a certain artist, etc. And by that definition I would not count for example my Harry Potter books as a collection (as there are only seven of them and mine aren't even all in the same kind of covers.) I might say I have a collection of C.S. Lewis books though, because even if not complete, I have collected a lot of his other works besides the Narnia books, and several biographies on his life as well. Most of those bought before the internet, which means more of an adventure and effort was involved in finding and ordering books from abroad back then (most of them bought in the 1980s).

  7. This postcard exchange sounds intriguing as I like snail mail (as we call post office delivered real main here, as opposed to email).
    I collect books and plants and quotes.


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