To my cover-exchanging friends, please try as much as possible to
as these give a more personal touch to the cover
the Philippine postal service damages the cover with scribbling that highly devalues the aesthetic value of the cover, which is what I am after
or at least same themes when sending covers, but it is okay if this is not possible or if this would be expensive, and
not too small, but maybe around 4"x6" or something like that; big envelopes are not very attractive unless they have many stamps.
Thank you!


Canada et پاکستان

Ok, so tonight I'll let myself get carried away: I'll post this second pair of covers.

This first cover, my second or third from Pakistan, gives us a glimpse of Pakistan. The block of four, as you can see, has the theme Visit Pakistan 2006 and shows a series of mountain-lake landscapes, which are among the most scenic areas of the country. Clockwise from the upper left that are Henna Lake, Lake Payee, Lake Dudi Pat Sar, and Lake Saiful Maluk.

Henna Lake nestles in the hills, ten kilometres (six miles) east of Quetta, a startling turquoise pool within bare brown surroundings. There is a lakeside restaurant with picnic tables shaded by pine trees. At one end, the irrigation dam rises out of the depths like battlements of a fort. It is very attractive for holidaymakers, and is crowded with hikers and campers on holidays. You can hire a boat and paddle on the lake and around the island in the middle.

Dudiptsar lake or Dudipat Lake is a beautiful lake encircled by snow clad peaks. The lake lies in the extreme north of Kaghan Valley and is about a four-hour drive from the chief town Naran. The word "dudi" means white and "sar" means lake. This name has been given to the lake because of the white color of snow at surrounding peaks.

Lake Saifal Maluk has water that is clear with a slight green tone. The clarity of the water comes from the multiple glaciers all around the high basin feeding the lake which provides a good scenery. It is speculated that an underground river empties into the lake; which is why its depth is unknown. A fairy tale called Saiful Muluk, written by the famous sufi poet Mian Muhammad Bakhsh, is associated with the lake and discusses a prince who fell in love with a fairy princess. The impact of the lake beauty is of such extent that people believe that fairies come down to the lake whenever there is a full moon.

Lake Payee probably isn't that popular as much hasn't been said about it.

Moving on to the other two stamps, let's start with the lower one. It celebrates the Platinum Jubilee (or 75th year) of the Karachi City Council KMC Building. The Karachi Municipal Corporation (KMC) Building is one of the many historic buildings located at M. A. Jinnah road and has evolved an iconic status as one of the landmark structures of Karachi. The foundation stone for the KMC Building was laid in 1927, construction was completed in 1930, followed by the inauguration in 1932.

The City District Government of Karachi decided to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the building on 07 Jan 07. On this occasion, the building went through a massive renovation project which included repairing of the clock tower. Events are organized around the theme of "Hamara Karachi Festival 2007." They include Mushaira, Exhibitions, Cultural, and social activities.

The last stamp, the upper one, commemorates the 21st International Congress of Ophthalmologists held in Islamabad in 2007. Ophthalmology is the branch of medicine which deals with the diseases and surgery of the visual pathways, including the eye, brain, and areas surrounding the eye, such as the lacrimal system and eyelids.

The stamps were franked at Islamabad on 21 May 08 and, again, the "Registered" postmark was used.

Up next we have a home-made 2008 Olympics cover from Canada sent on 08.08.08, the first day of the Olympics, if you recall. The cover bears two of the single stamps that were issued by Canada Post in July. The stamp celebrates Canada's participation in the Games of the XXIX Olympiad and recognizes the more than 340 athletes who proudly represented Canada in Beijing. I find the design pretty neat, one of those contemporary pieces that give off a feeling of motion even though the picture is obviously not moving. I like the design very much, but I must say it took me a while to figure out that the athlete was holding up a Canadian flag.

This is the back of the cover, where we have some more stamps for additional postage. As you can see, the post office here in the Philippines ravaged the back of the cover again with those terrible pen scribbles! Why is the post office doing this? Can't they tell that the cover is for collection? It angers me when I see this scribbling on the covers I receive.

Also, I was just wondering about the postmark used. I was just wondering if it is a special personal postmark that the sender can use if he obtains a permit (just like in the States: "Mailer's Postmark")? I ask because I am used to postmarks that. although also large and rectangular, bear the Canada Post logo. This one does not. Does anyone have any information on this?

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