Daily Phuket #49: 9 May 2021 – Stampy Sunday

A new week so I wanted to start it in a more relaxed manner than I left the old week. I had a bit of a lie-in (that means “I slept late” for my American readers), finally pulling myself out of bed around 11 a.m. I have my blackout curtains to thank for that — it is as dark as a cave in here if I don’t open them. They keep my apartment much cooler than the old (kind of a washed-out pink) did.

I then an hour or so reading and finished the bookshop book. It was okay but not nearly as humorous as the reviews made it out to be. At any rate, I am now trying to decide if I want to return to one of my in-progress books (which includes Bill Bryson’s The Body, an account of anti-Nazi Germans during World War II, and a couple of stamp-related works) or start something completely new. I have a huge digital TBR pile (my collection is almost entirely eBooks) — more than three thousand, in fact.

Most of the afternoon was taken up spending quality time with my massive album titled, The International Postage Stamp Album, Part I: The First Hundred Years of Philately. According to the title page, it “Provides for a representative collection of the Postage Stamps of the World from 1840 to mid-1940 including spaces for more than 35,000 varieties from the earliest issues up to the time of publication, with separate descriptions of the varieties ordinarily found in most collections and blank spaces for such rare stamps as may be acquired….Fully Illustrated — more than 8000 illustrations made from the original stamps.” I own the 1947 edition (and also have Part II which covers just mid-1940 until mid-1949 and is just as huge).

To keep things short, most collectors refer to these albums as “Big Blue”. There is even a comprehensive blog devoted to just the Part 1 album called Big Blue 1840-1940. I have only had the album since around mid-January and I am methodically going through it bit by bit, adding stamps that I have owned for years as well as recording what was already in the album (it was used but in awesome shape). The album begins with United States stamps and proceeds chronologically from there. In my cataloguing spreadsheet, I have also been keeping a running tally of page numbers.

Today, I began on page 500 and ended on page 598. The countries for which I mounted or catalogued stamps today were:

  1. Hungary (70 stamps)
  2. Hungary Under Romanian Occupation (1)
  3. Iceland (3)
  4. India (2)
  5. Indo-China (6)
  6. Inini (5)
  7. Irish Free State (Eire) (8)
  8. Iraq (1)
  9. Italian East Africa (2)
  10. Italy (43)
  11. Ivory Coast (4)
  12. Jamaica (2)
  13. Japan (9)

So, that’s 156 stamps that I “worked with” today. The majority of those from Hungary and Italy were in the album already and I enjoyed looking them up in my catalogue to determine their number, date of issue, etc. There was one stamp valued at USD $26.00 and another was USD $7. Most of the rest are around the minimum Scott catalogue value of US 25 cents which doesn’t really reflect actual market value. But my collection is not an investment, it gives me enjoyment from the designs, learning about the places where they are from, and so much more. Money is not the object of a collection such as this.

Anyway, I spent four hours or so working on the stamp album this afternoon, the first time in about three weeks that I’d pulled it off the shelf. It was also the first time I used my new desk and side-table arrangement. This was much more comfortable than my old system spread out on my bed with a Japanese dinner tray-table.

I did a bit of blogging this evening but the Internet was extremely slow making uploads and the rest of the process a little frustrating. These were articles about newly issued stamps from New Caledonia and Saint Pierre & Miquelon but, unfortunately, La Poste of France provided very little information about the subject matter nor could I find much running Google searches. So, I gave up after posting just three of these. I didn’t post anything to my postcard blog.

Tomorrow will probably be a light-blogging day as well as I will journey to the big shopping center in the center of Phuket island. I wouldn’t go but I need to resolve an issue at my bank and try to purchase a few things at Central Food Hall that would have come yesterday if Tesco had delivered my order. For example, I really need tin foil, mustard and Sri Racha spicy mayonnaise. I will see how I feel about spending extra money (will go to the grocery store AFTER the bank) but I would also like a jar of pickles and some cheese. Perhaps some sliced deli meat but we’ll see about that.

It will be odd to venture so far from my little enclave. I hope it’s overcast and cool as I have become accustomed to the dark lately and don’t think my eyes can take bright sunlight! Ha ha. I will do my best to try to take an interesting photo tomorrow. Outside.

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