With love from The Gambia (1991)

with love from the Gambia

Banjul, the Gambia 31.1.91 Dear Simon, Hilary and Talulah, The wandering nomad has discovered the richness of W. Africa and likes what he sees! This is such a rare place – desperately poor and under developed, yet so welcoming and very pro British from it’s historical background. It’s also VERY HOT! Yesterday I actually played cricket in 90°F heat against the national side…we very obviously lost (in fact the game was almost abandoned because it was so oppressive) I hope you are all safe and well. The war news is pretty dreadful and I am still a little concerned that my ship may yet get called upon. It’s unlikely, thank Goodness. Mandy will probably be in touch soon when details for our wedding firm up. Can’t wait! Take care now. All my love, Gra x

Gra continues to enjoy tours with the Royal Navy, but on this occasion the 1991 Gulf War overshadows events.

There is no postmark on the card, but Gra has helpfully dated it. The stamp is commemorating the artist Raphael, but I cannot find any other information about it – can anyone else help?

By this time Gra is looking forward to his second marriage…

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With love from Cornwall (2005)

with love from Cornwall

Hi Hilary – We’re in Cornwall at the moment – thought of you and Simon as we’re in Newquay today. Janet (Gra’s sister) is getting married on Saturday + Carrie + Ashlea are bridesmaids + I’m singing. Lots of excitement + my mum + dad are coming too. Getting about to different beaches with the children. Hope to catch up before hols are ended – will be in touch. Lots of love Sara + all xxx

Amidst all the excitement Sara has still found time to drop me a postcard – the style of writing suggests a very hectic time. Simon, my husband, comes from Cornwall, which is why she’s thought of us.

The postmark is very blurred, but I believe that it is dated 22.06.05  The other blurred postmark is asking us to ‘Please print the postcode’ – something which Sara has ignored on this occasion, and the card still arrived safely!

I haven’t seen Sara in a while, we both seem to have more time for meeting during the winter months…

With love from Berlin (2017)

with love from Berlin

Berlin, 30.05.17  Hallo Hilary! This is the Revival postcard from Berlin :)!! 30 years later I’m now able to walk through Brandenburg Gate – it’s still a marvel!! I hope we won’t start building new walls in the future! Love Claudia

A status update from earlier this year, in which Claudia refers to the other card she sent me, 37 years ago 🙂 Berlin is now much more of a tourist destination than it was in the 80’s

Claudia and I continue to exchange news and views 🙂

 

With love from Barcelona (1991)

with love from Barcelona

Dear All, Having a brilliant week in Barcelona with Tony & Ursula. The architecture – Modernist, Gothic & Medieval – is stunning. We’re finding time for plenty of local brews & tapas. We also went to the mountains for a day’s break, & came back laden with lovely old pots. Many congrats on the new baby – I’ll be in touch v. soon. Love Anne x

Anne enjoys art and culture so, naturally, she is loving Barcelona!

The card carries 45 pesetas of stamps featuring King Juan Carlos I from the 1976-84 definitive series and is postmarked ‘BARCELONA 27 JUN 91’, which is several months after the birth of the ‘new’ baby mentioned.

Suddenly, it appears that two  years have passed since I last caught up with Anne… 😦

 

With love from Malia, Greece (c1987)

with love from Malia

Sunday.  so far so good, chickens and deckchairs aside. Having lots of fun – loads of swimming, snorkelling (have seen some great fish!), sunbathing etc Food – dirt cheap & the beer. We’re hiring scooters to see ruins of Heraklion tomorrow then a jeep to visit Vai (of bounty advert fame) & some other places. Have 2 trips planned too; a cretan evening with apt food & entertainment in scenic spot & an approx 10 mile walk along biggest gorge in Europe (apparently) + desparately needed boat ride! Loads of banana trees about. Malia‘s a pleasant combination of old traditional & new touristy. Hope to see you soon (after 25th) love Sara, Simon x

There seems to be an entire ‘rough guide’ to Crete contained in this message! Sara and Simon are certainly making the most of their trip.

Unfortunately, the card carries no postmark, so I am guessing this was sent around 1987

The 32 drachma stamp is from the Greek Gods series issued in 1986

Sara and I have been friends since school and continue to see each other regularly – I’m not sure if she still uses my nickname from way back, Hiral… that’s the thing about nicknames, you don’t notice them after a while!

 

 

With love from Berlin (1980)

with-love-from-berlin

Hello Hilary! Here is my postcard from Berlin. It is very nice here although the weather is quite cold. Yesterday evening we went on to the top platform of the sky-scraper which you can see on the card. From there we had a wonderful view over the whole city. But next time I’ll write more Many greetings Claudia

So here’s a card from 1980’s Berlin some 9 years before the wall came down. It carries a 50 pfennig stamp from the castles and palaces series. At the top of this stamp you can see that it was issued by the Federal Post Berlin.

‘sky-scraper’ is a phrase of the era! The building is known as the Europa-Center.

The card is postmarked ‘BERLIN 5.11.80’ and carries a second postmark, the rough translation of which is ‘keep connected with mail’ – a great sentiment!

Claudia is another prolific communicator who is also widely travelled 🙂

With love from Banbury (1980)

with-love-from-banbury

6/10/80 Dear Hilary, Just a quickie from me, while on holiday on the Oxford Canals. It is really good fun. We go to all the pubs en route and have had parties on the barge!! The weather has not been brilliant but we enjoying it so that’s all that matters! Today we are at Banbury. It is a really nice country town. I hope you are getting on OK at college. Bye for now Jan xx

A cheery status update from Janet,  who appears to have enjoyed at least two canal holidays in 1980!  As usual she is making the best of things, despite the inclement British weather.

The card is post marked is ‘BANBURY 1.15pm 7 OCT 1980 OXON’ and also carries the old favourite ‘Be properly addressed POSTCODE IT’.

In the UK we all hear about Banbury Cross from a young age thanks to a traditional nursery rhyme – although I suspect few of us have ever visited and some may not even realise the connection!

As I continue this reflection of my life through the postcards I’ve received, I am amazed at just how many messages some people have sent to me – Janet is one of the most prolific correspondents 🙂