With love from Huizen, Holland (1980)

with-love-from-holland

Dear Hiral, Having a great time, so far, (it’s only the 2nd day but I’m sending this now so it arrives before I do!) As you can see the natives are really lively, always laughing + joking tapping their clogs, harping on about windmills and making sure their bikes are roadworthy. A FULL REPORT ON MY RETURN! Luv MAND.

A witty note full of stereotypical descriptions, but not a lot of information about what Mand is doing on her trip! Huizen is in northern Holland but there is no indication if Mand was staying there or simply passing through.

The card is postmarked ‘AMSTERDAM 18 VIII 80’ and carries another postmark which roughly translates as ‘POSTCODE use it well’ – a familiar request. The 55c stamp features Queen Juliana and was issued in 1971

Mand was at senior school and sixth form college with me, along with Sara and Anne. At one point Mand and I fell out over a boy… I’m no longer in touch with Mand.

 

With love from Costa Brava, Spain (1979)

with-love-from-spain

Dear Hiraly, we are in beautiful sunny Spain and having a great time. We’re staying in the place on the front of the postcard. I’ve put a dot & a cross where I think our villa is. It’s a bit hard to distinguish one from another at that distance but never mind! So far I haven’t had time to write postcards but I’ve got a headache at the moment which really throbs so I haven’t been swimming. Too much sun I expect! I’m convinced I’ve got sunstroke though! I’ve bought myself some snorkelling stuff (very cheap here) and we (me, Neil, Ally, Paula, our friends) went snorkelling off the rocks. It was great fun. We saw shoals of fish, black very spiky sea urchins which I so cleverly got stuck in her big toe despite wearing plastic sandals. Luckily we managed to get most of it out. Trust me. I’d better go there’s not much space left as you can see. Hope to see you at end of summer love Jackie xxx PS Neil saw an octopus. I’ve never got of the sea so fast.

Another card from Jackie with her distinctive method of writing all around the edge and back across the top! Despite feeling under the weather she’s managed to pack a lot of news and anecdotes into the space.  The cross she refers to is just visible to the right of the trunk and on the wooded area in the distance; the dot is just below it.

The postmark date is 16 06 1979 and the stamp is one of a set of three encouraging us all to save energy.

Porta de la Selva is featured on the front and still looks much the same although that tree might have gone now!

Jackie was seemingly quite a prolific card writer and enjoyed many holidays with her family.

with love from Keswick (1979)

Keswick 1979

Dear Hilary, Ged here in Keswick and believe it or not its sunny for a change. Ta for your letter and postcard from up North. As you can see I’m in Keswick still but I go home on the 6th of September to my new house the address of which is 14 …. I’ve got to work till next Thursday so I’ll write a proper letter then from ….. So I’ll be able to tell you all my news then, tarra for now. Gerard xx P.S Don’t think much of the hotel on the other side. P.S.S. Hope you had a nice holiday! xx

Here’s another postcard being used to update an address change.  It’s amazing how often we all did that, back in the day! It is unclear whether Ged is staying in the hotel or working in it – the latter I suspect. Either way he’s obviously not a fan, despite the ‘warm welcome, courtesy and friendliness’ promised in print at the bottom!

Sunshine in Keswick is, of course, worthy of a comment 🙂  My postcard to him was from even further ‘up North’ – our family holiday that year was spent driving and camping round the north coast of Scotland.

Postmarked ‘KESWICK 11.30am 31 AUG 1979 CUMBRIA’, this card was posted exactly 37 years ago today! The other postmark is the old favourite ‘REMEMBER to use the POST CODE!’ which he hasn’t.

The card carries 10p worth of stamps which is approximately 52p today (2016).

This is three years after Ged and I first met and the correspondence was still fairly regular; these were the days long before texts, emails, Whatsapp, Facebook; when there were only 3 channels on UK tv and expensive long distance phone calls were made by special appointment and only with permission of the bill payer (Dad), who was generally sat in the same room listening in! Letter writing was the only option 🙂 

with love from Ireland (1986)

With love from Ireland

Firstly, Belated congrats. Hope you’re both enjoying plenty of bliss! Well we’re now at the end of the Irish Tour 86. We’ve seen lots of Ireland like Dublin, Wexford, Waterford, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and back to Dun Laoghaire. Just about every place featured overleaf I’d say. As you’d expect we’ve dabbled a bit with the Guinness and checked out lots of cousins and generally speaking had a great time. Might see you if we come down for Sunderlands’ game at Portsmouth. Lots of love Gerard and the lads on hols!

An enthusiastic status update from the Emerald Isle where ‘Gerard and the lads’ obviously enjoyed themselves 🙂

Postmarked ‘DUN LAOGHAIRE 1.30pm 2 AUG 1986’ the card carries another, barely legible, postmark asking ‘are you on the VOTERS LIST…’

The 24p stamp features Cormac Chapel and is part of the Irish Architecture series issued between 1982 and 1990

Amazingly, this card was sent some ten years after we met on holiday as young teenagers! The card is addressed to both me and Simon and acknowledges our recent wedding; however, we did not meet up for Sunderland v Portsmouth. The good news is that I have now re-connected with Gerard and we have exchanged several emails. He (and his wife) still live 300 miles away, but we are thinking about planning a get together in conjunction with next season’s football fixtures 🙂 

with love from Southborough, Kent (1981)

with love from Kent

Hello there its me here working far too hard in boring Kent. Just thought I’d send a post card. The journey back was o.k. The test on Monday was alright, nothing to worry about! Going home tomorrow thank God! I will be in touch in the near future.  Love Gerard. xx P.S. Does this count as a letter

Similar to the other card from Southborough this one is dated earlier the same year, carrying the postmark ‘TUNBRIDGE WELLS 6.45pm 15 JAN 1981 KENT’ together with the detailed Pantiles postmark.

This card again features David Salomon‘s house, which in the 1980’s was a regional conference and training centre.

Since I’ve got several cards featuring this building I’m assuming that Gerard was based there for some reason. The text suggests that he’d been to visit me and this must have been the final time that we met, although correspondence continued for several more years. To date I have not managed to reconnect with Gerard…

With love from Venice (1977)

With love from Venice 1977

Dear Hilary, Thanks for the letter, I will write as soon as we get home. As you’ve probably noticed we’re in Venice. So far we’ve seen St. Marks Square (and avoided the very low flying pigeons!) sailed up the grand canal and got lost in the back streets. Next week we are going to Pompei, Vesuvius and Herculaneum. We are staying at a very modern hotel with a swimming pool! love to everyone Jackie xx p.s. There’s loads of tall, dark, handsome Italian boys!

Post marked ‘SIENA 14 LUG 1977’ (14th July 1977) this card was obviously posted once they’d moved on from Venice. It carries stamps to the value of 130 Lire, the currency of Italy prior to the Euro.

From the text it sounds as though Jackie is having a thoroughly exciting time; showing particular enthusiasm for the ‘modern hotel’ WITH swimming pool! Being teenage girls our interest in boys was significant – mention of the ‘loads’ of eye candy in Italy would, no doubt, have made me quite jealous at the time 😉

I have lost touch with Jackie and, despite various internet searches, as yet I have been unable to reconnect with her.

with love from Pertisau am Achensee, Austria (1976)

With love from Pertisau am Achensee

Dear Hilary,  I am having a great time I haven’t fallen over once yet. I hope you are having a great time as well. The weather is beautiful and so is the view from our bedroom window. By the way Clive is behaving. We went to the glass place at Kufstein and we saw them carving things on glasses see you sometime love Jackie xx

 

Another card posted from Austria (almost 40 years ago!) and postmarked ‘Pertisau 3-2-1976 6213’

The picture of Pertisau am Achensee is similarly repeated in the other post mark, so must be the ‘classic’ view of the town.

The ‘glass place’ mentioned is the world famous Riedel glass factory.

 

Jackie posted this from a school ski trip – she still went on the trip even though she had left our school and moved out of the area (with her family) some months earlier. I went away skiing with my family the same week – my parents figured that there would be lots of kids who’d missed lessons and had to catch up. This was, of course, back in the days when trips and holidays could be taken in UK term time without any hassles or fines! Clive, was the boy I fancied at the time – I probably spent much of my own week away imagining him and the others getting up to all sorts of fun without me…