Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Surprises in the mail

Most of the mail we get these days are bills.  Email has become so prevalent, that we rarely get any written correspondence from anyone, so when something does come in the mail, we usually are surprised.  Most of what I get in written correspondence are postcards.

I belong to a website called Postcrossing.  The premise is pretty simple - send a postcard, receive a postcard from somewhere in the world a little bit later on.  The more you send, the more you receive.  I've acquired quite a collection of postcards from around the world.  One of the postcards I received this summer, didn't come via Postcrossing however.  Here's where it gets interesting.

Over two years ago, I wrote on this blog about a student of mine who was taking a trip of a lifetime.  At that time, he was a part time geocacher, nothing obsessive, but he enjoyed going out and finding a cache from time to time.  Most of his caches he logged under his family's account, but he also logged a couple under his own account.  I kidded with him before he left that he should find a couple of caches down in Ecuador where he was going.  He took me up on that and found a virtual cache and a regular cache in some of the free time he had available. 

At the same time, I also asked if he could send me a postcard from Ecuador.   He did, but he did it in a unique way.  Apparently, he found a spot down there where you could  post cards on a board and hopefully, someone would see the card and bring it closer to its destination.  He posted the card at the "Barrel" on Florence Island in the Galapagos on March 7th, 2008  It took over two years, but the postcard arrived by the US mail at the beginning of the summer this year.  Every now and then, you get one of those neat surprises in the mail.

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RDOwens said...

That is an interesting story. I like when things like that happen.

Postcrossing has always sounded fun to me, but I don't need another hobby . . . particularly one that adds to my stuff. I am trying to declutter, not add to the pile. ;)

Erika Jean said...

Very cool.

Postcrossing is SO addictive!

Sarah said...

I didn't realise you were a fellow Postcrosser. I love the Ecuadorian postcard, and its unusual method of reaching you

Webfoot said...

I've been Postcrossing for slightly over a year now. It's something I found out about via Twitter.

My former students wrote on the back of that postcard that the blue footed boobies, pictured on the card are usually born in pairs, but will peck each other to the death. Unfortunately, the mortality rate of these bird chicks is very high.

chaosmanor said...

That's really cool! That idea is something of a throw-back to centuries ago, when a lot of correspondence got to where it was going by the, "I say, are you heading anywhere near Thread-upon-Needle?" method.

There's a geocache (Poorboyz Express: GC1CZ36) along I-5, north of Sacramento, that was set up to do something similar, but I don't think it is working the way the owner had intended it.

Webfoot said...

I didn't make the connection at first with that cache you listed, but something about the name made me look it up. I found that cache about a year ago coming home from Idaho with my older son.

In fact, I've used it as my qualifying cache for Glenn County in the 58 California County challenge.

Sumajman said...

This is a nice story. I've heard of postcrossing. I live in Quito, Ecuador. One of our fellow cachers here created a post card hotel designed for people to send postcards via geocaches. I don't think it took off and that particular geocache is now archived but the concept is interesting. I enjoy your blog.