Saturday, December 13, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #47

Postcard #47
Postcard #47 is a photo of Obidos Castle in Portugal. This card traveled 9,112 Kms (5,662 Miles) and took 8 days to get to me.

Postcard #47 Stamp
Beijing 2008 Olympics stamp from Portugal. Looks like track and field.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Postcrossing Milestone and Akoha Mission

Yesterday I received an e-mail from Postcrossing that the card I sent to Finland US-298995 has arrived. This card is a personal milestone of 100 sent postcards and to commemorate the event I sent this person a congratulations greeting card along with an Akoha mission card "Give Someone a Greeting Card". Don't know about Akoha? Check out this nifty comic that explains how the reality based play it forward game is played.

Akoha Mission: Give Someone a Greeting Card

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Disneyland's Holiday Main Street at Night

Disneyland Main Street at Night (Winter 2008) #1
I didn't bring a tripod with me on Sunday so to get decent photos of the lights I pumped up my ISO and propped myself up against a lamppost for steadiness and took a lot of photos hoping I'd get enough clear shots to stitch together. This first panoramic was taken at the end of Main Street in front of the Coca Cola shop; it is a series of 19 photos stitched with Autostich.

Disneyland Main Street at Night (Winter 2008) #2
This second panoramic was taken at the middle of Main Street and this time I used a trash can to reduce my camera shake; 30 photos were taken and 23 turned out clear enough for this stitch. Both of these images are very large, if you would like to see the bigger versions just click the image to be taken to flickr.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Holiday Themed Sleeping Beauty's Castle

Sleeping Beauty's Castle at Night - Winter 2008

We went to Disneyland yesterday to take photos of the holiday decorations and I got this shot of Sleeping Beauty's Castle with just enough light to allow me to still take this hand held photo. I plan to go again with a tripod before the decorations are changed for crisper shots.

I shot a bunch of photos on Main Street that need to be stitched together for what I hope will be interesting panoramics. I'll try to get them finished this week.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #46

Postcard #46
Postcard #46 is from China and is a photo of Swaying Stone at Dongshan. This card traveled 10,631 Kms (6,606 Miles) and took 16 days to get to me.

Postcard #46 Stamp
A rocket taking off at the Xichang Satellite Launch Center. If I were able to type the Chinese characters I would attempt to get a translation; if you know what it says please leave a comment and let me know. Thank you Benita for the translation!

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #45

Postcard #45

Postcard #45 is from China and is a photo of Mount Song, one of the Taoist Five Sacred Mountains and is located in Henan province on the south bank of the Yellow River in China.

Postcard #45 Stamp

I'm not really sure what is going on in the drawing for this stamp, seems like all the people are looking at the tiger. The three Chinese characters at the bottom might explain but I can't read it.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #44

Postcard #44

Postcard #44 is a cheesy card from The Netherlands. This card traveled 9,025 Kms (5,608 Miles) and took 6 days to get to me.

Postcard #44 Stamp
This Netherlands stamp promotes being green, translates to "Think Green, Do Green".

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #43

Postcard #43
Postcard #43 is a city view card from Duisburg, Germany. This card traveled 9,138 Kms (5,678 Miles) and took 6 days to reach me.

Postcard #43 Stamp
Stamp from Germany depicting Porta Nigra Trier.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #42

Postcard #42

Postcard #42 is from Finland and is a photo of a dove with the quote printed at the bottom translated from Finnish to English with Google Translator is says "Luck dove will bring you the greetings!" This postcard traveled 8,899 Kms (5,530 Miles) and took 7 days to get to me.

Postcard #42 Stamp

I continue to get great stamps from Finland; a drawing of 2 children's heads, the border which completes the drawing was not removed. I don't think the stamp would have looked as nice if it were removed.

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #41

Postcard #41

Postcard #41 is a beautiful scenic photo from Finland. This card traveled 9,013 Kms (5,600 Miles) and took 14 days to get to me.

Postcard #41 Stamp

Another great stamp from Finland; looks like a drawing of someone hanging out in a flower garden.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #40

Postcard #40
Postcard #40 is from Rome, Italy and is a photo of the Spanish Steps. This card traveled 10,224 Kms (6,353 Miles) and took 10 days to get to me.

Postcard #40 Stamp
A very fast stamp from Italy; the Lamborghini emblem.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #39

Postcard #39

Postcard #39 is a view card from Luxembourg mailed from Estonia while the sender was on vacation. On the back of the card there are 5 location names but I don't know which match with the photos on the front, they are: Circuit Vauban, Statue de la Princesse Amelie, Chemin de la Corniche, Parc Municipal, Villa Vauban. This card traveled 9,252 Kms (5,749 Miles) and took 10 days to get to me.

Postcard #39 Stamp

Excellent stamps from Estonia; Kiiu Tower Castle and Juminda Lighthouse

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #38

Postcard #38
Postcard #38 is from Finland and is a photo is cloudberries which the sender says are very delicious. This card traveled 8,948 Kms (5,560 Miles) and took 9 days to get to me.

Postcard #38 Stamp
Another great stamp from Finland; soccer(football) themed with a rounded right side for the soccer ball. very cool.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #37

Postcard #37

Postcard #37 is from Finland and is an art card of a painting by Maria Vagyon; according to the sender she paints with her feet. I tried searching for information about her with no luck. This card traveled 8,899 Kms (5,530 Miles) and took 5 days to get to me.

Postcard #37 Stamp

Another excellent stamp from Finland; a flower named Dryas Octopetala.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #36

Postcard #36
Postcard #36 is from Taiwan; Yang Ming Shan National Park in Taiwan. This card traveled 11,133 Kms (6,918 Miles) and took 26 days to get to me.


Postcard #36 Stamp

I love it when I get multiple stamps on a card this card had 3! The bird is preprinted but the 2 fruit stamps are actual stamps and they look great.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Smoke at Discovery Science Center

Smoke at Discovery Science Center

While waiting at a red light I took this photo of the smoke from the Yorba Linda fire near the Discovery Science Center. Taken Saturday morning (11/15/2008)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Akoha Starter Deck Has Arrived

Akoha: Info cards from starter deck

Two months ago I ordered an
Akoha starter deck and yesterday it finally arrived! Although I have already been playing the game for about 6 weeks it is still very exciting to now get to use the actual cards; so many new missions to play. :) If you have not heard of Akoha please check out this nifty comic that explains the game play

Akoha: Mission Cards

The photo above shows 12 of the missions that come with the deck; the missions range from simply thanking someone or generating a smile to giving a surprise gift, chocolate or flowers. Besides the preprinted missions, Akoha has the Mission HQ which is where users have the opportunity to suggest new missions. Currently there are about 100 additional missions that can be added to your deck and to play them you simply print out a PDF and fold. A couple of my suggested missions are on the list; "Give Someone A Memory" which is played by giving a friend something that reminds them of a fond memory such as a photo, letter or article.  "Give Someone A Greeting Card" which is intended to encourge the giving of nonoccasion greeting cards such as cheer up, funny or inspriational cards.

If you are not already in the Akoha beta and it seems like something you want to try out, sign up or seek out a current player and have them play a mission to you. That's how I got in. :)

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Postcrossing: 8 cards outbound today

Postcrossing: Outbound cards for 11/6/2008

I just finished filling out 8 postcards for postcrossing and will be dropping them off at the post office in the morning. The cards will be traveling to the following countries: Canada, Finland (x3), Germany, Russia, Italy and Australia.

The last batch of 7 cards I sent out 2 weeks ago have all arrived at their destinations except the card to China; hopefully it will get there soon.

I'm very close to 100 sent cards!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Gifts From Japan

My buddy Ian just arrived home from his 54 days in Japan and brought me gifts. I had asked him for one thing and that was a Coke can from Japan and he came through with a can; it almost looks the same as a can here in the US but with nutrition and ingredients in Japanese. The big surprise is that he brought me more stuff!

Disneyland Japan Pressed CoinA pressed medal from Tokyo Disneyland which looks awesome; I wish the pressed pennies at Disneyland were this detailed. I've been collecting pressed pennies from Disneyland for a few years now and it was nice of Ian to think of me when he saw the medal machine at Tokyo Disneyland.


He also got me a postcard sent from Mount Fuji that was stamped with a special cancellation that can only be gotten from Mt Fuji. Very cool and a nice addition to both my postcard collection and stamp collection.
Postcard from Mt Fuji, Japan

There are 4 cancellations on this card with 3 of them being the special cancellations from Mt Fuji Post Office
Postcard from Mt Fuji, Japan (Stamped)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Postcrossing: 7 cards heading to the Post Office

Postcrossing: Outbound cards for 10/21/2008

I just finished filling out 7 Postcrossing postcards that I will be mailing out tomorrow; they are going to the following countries: Germany, Finland (x2), China, Latvia, Lithuania and Portugal. Here is to hoping they all make it to their destinations.

Happy Postcrossing,

Richard

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Postcrossing Update

I have now posted postcrossing postcards #1-35 that I have received from around the world and still have 40 more cards to scan; I hope to get these scanned and uploaded soon. Here are my postcrossing stats as of today:

» Sent: 79 postcards
» Received: 75 postcards
» Traveling: 1 postcard out of 8
» Sent distance: 755,173 Kms (469,243 miles)
» Received distance: 717,384 Kms (445,762 miles)

I also have 3 expired(traveling over 60 days) cards:
* Brazil(erii) traveling 74 days
* Greece(dst121gr) traveling 191 days
* Germany(McCoize_de) traveling 233 days (this was my very first card ever mailed!)

Maybe one day these cards will get unstuck from a mail sorting machine and arrive. :)

Happy Postcrossing,

Richard

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and stamp #35

Postcard #35Postcard #35 is from Holland (Netherlands) and is a very cool tulip shaped card with a photo of a commercial tulip garden and large windmill. This is my first card not shaped like a postcard! This card traveled 8,993 Kms (5,588 Miles) and took 6 days to get to me.

Postcard #35 StampAnother heart shaped globe stamp from the Netherlands. Must be a popular international mail stamp in NL.

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamps #34

Postcard #34
Postcard #34 is from China and is a photo of Statues on the Peak Flying From Afar. This card traveled 10,599 Kms (6,586 Miles) and took 20 days to get to me.

Postcard #34 Stamp
Bird stamps from China

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Akoha: Three Weeks Later

It has been almost three weeks since joining the Akoha beta by confirming my first mission and I’m doing pretty well. Although I still have not received a “real” mission deck I have been able to make good use of the Mission HQ and added several cards to my deck that I was able to print out and play with friends and co-workers. I am doing so well that that my karma point total puts me in seventh place amongst all Akohans and only a few hundred points away from over taking sixth and fifth place.

I'm in seventh place!Watch out Austin I’m going to pass you. :)

So far I have played 13 missions to people and confirmed 4 missions that were played to me. Playing the thirteenth mission advanced me to level 6 which at the moment means nothing but I am sure as the months roll along new features will be added that can apply meaning to a level gained. I already have my next mission (Give Someone a Surprise Gift) planned and will play it as soon as I acquire the item I am giving.

Akoha Mission: Give Someone a PlantOne of my recently played missions was “Give Someone a Plant” and I’m looking forward to seeing this mission get played forward; a new plant is always a nice gift to receive. This was a user submitted mission and I think a great candidate to be turned into an official card. About two weeks ago I submitted a couple mission ideas of my own (“Give Someone a Recipe” and “Give Someone a Memory”) and am looking forward to seeing them get through moderation and become available in the Mission HQ soon. If a mission like “Make Love to Your Lover” [I think this mission is for swingers, otherwise a strange mission to ask to be played forward :-)] can make it on the list then mine should have a chance.

I would have a lot more missions played but it has been a challenge getting some friends to join the game and I think part of the problem is calling Akoha a game. Once they hear game they start thinking video games and time sink. So I have started telling people this is more of an activity that encourages social interaction and not really a game, points and levels are just for fun. Hopefully I’ll get more friends playing and will get missions played all over town. I may start playing missions to a few random people just to see what happens, so far it has worked well with a mission I played to a fellow Postcrosser in Germany; she joined and has already played a mission to a friend.

Back to playing Akoha; could you be the next recipient of a mission card?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #33

Postcard #33
Postcard #33 is from Germany and is a map card from Dresden.

Postcard #33 Stamp Flower stamps; a tulip and narzisse.

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #32

Postcard #32
Postcard #32 is from China and is a photo of the Imperial Palace in Shen Yang. This card traveled 11,725 Kms (7,286 Miles) and took 9 days to get to me.

Postcard #32 StampThe stamp on the right is preprinted with the same image on front and the stamp on the left is a large art print.

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #31

Postcard #31
Postcard #31 is from Finland and is a photo of a mining car from Tytyri Mine. This card traveled 9,049 Kms (5,623 Miles) and took 8 days to get to me.

Postcard #31 StampThis stamp from Finland was very cool; it moves when you move the card from side to side! That's why the scan does not look very clear. Great stamp!

Postcrossing Postcard and Stamp #30

Postcard #30
Postcard #30 is from China; the card text says this photo is of "Water Cave in Ben Xi", I found this photo collection from Ben Xi. This card traveled 11,725 Kms (7,286 Miles) and took 13 days to get to me.

Postcard #30 Stamps
The stamp on the right is preprinted with the same image on the front of the card and the other stamp is a nice mountain scene.