Paraguay, At Last!

Asuncion, Paraguay

Asuncion, Paraguay

My first postcard from Paraguay comes from Jimena, who lives in Argentina but traveled to Paraguay over the holidays. As those of you who collect postcards would know, most South American countries are notoriously difficult to collect, so I am super excited about this postcard! Unfortunately I could not find anything about this train station in the country’s capital that was in English, so I absolutely cannot elaborate on why this postcard is cool any further. But for those of you who do know a thing or two about it, please do leave me a comment!

Caffeinated Colombia

Coffee of Colombia

Coffee of Colombia

This great postcard of Colombian coffee production comes all the way from Omar. It is my first postcard from this country and only my fourth South American country, along with Brazil, Argentina and Suriname. Personally, Colombian coffee is my absolute favourite coffee and I’m sure there are many people that would agree with me on that point. Coffee farming has had a long history in Colombia, since its introduction in 1730. By 1835 the first commercial production of coffee started in the country and today over 500 000 families in the country derive an income from its production. Due to climate change, however, the production has decreased by 25% since 2006, from 12 million bags of coffee per year, down to 9 million bags. Come now mother nature, we need our Colombian Coffee. Thank you Omar, it’s a great postcard!

A Fair Trade?

Fort Zeelandia, Paramaribo, Suriname

Fort Zeelandia, Paramaribo, Suriname

This cool postcard comes from Cherryl in Suriname. Fort Zeelandia is located in the oldest part of Suriname’s capital, Paramaribo. The fort was originally called “Fort Willoughby” by its builders, the British, in 1651. It was built around a small Dutch trading post that existed there at the time. In 1667 the Dutch and the British made a small swap. The Dutch gave the British Nieuw-Amsterdam (New York) and the British gave them Suriname and at that point, the fort was named Fort Zeelandia. I bet the Dutch of the time would kick themselves if they could see New York today. Fort Zeelandia is also the site where former Surinamese dictator, Dési Bouterse, was responsible for what was termed “The December Murders” in 1982. It really does look like a wonderful piece of history! Thank you Cherryl!

A Round Argentina

Argentina

Argentina

Julio from Argentina sent me this cool round map card of his country. Argentina is the 8th largest country in the world, with a land area of 2 780 400 square kilometers. That is more than double the size of my home country of South Africa, which is also quite large. It is also the second largest country in South America and the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world. The capital city of Argentina is Buenos Aires. Despite the country’s ranking as a middle-income country, its Human Development Index indicates that it has done quite well in empowering its people. This country is, however, no stranger to instability and hardship, with a great number of military coups having taken place over the course of its history. I cannot think of this country without thinking about that oh-so-famous Andrew Lloyd Webber play, Evita and of course the flamenco. It is a country, very rich in culture and with a very interesting history indeed!

Diamonds & Lava

Diamond Lake & Maipo Volcano

Diamond Lake & Maipo Volcano

This contender for my top 10 favourite postcards comes to me all the way from Rubén in Argentina. This is my first postcard from his country and I could not be more happy. It shows Diamond Lake and Maipo Volcano, located in the Western part of the country in the province of Mendoza. Maipo Volcano also spans across into the neighbouring country of Chile. Rubén tells me that this region has many volcanoes and vineyards and is located in an earthquake zone. Beauty, danger and wine, where do I sign up to live in Mendoza? Maipo does not have the highest peak in the Andes but its symmetrical conical shape is what makes it so popular. Thank you Rubén! When you said you’d send me a beautiful view, my expectations were not aligned with this kind of beauty!

Go Cowboy Go

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Pantanal, Brazil

From Jader, who now lives in São Paulo, Brazil, I received this awesome postcard. He tells me that he grew up in this region but moved to São Paulo in search of fame and fortune, as he wishes to become the leading male actor in Avenida Brasil. He also tells me that he does not ride horses like this cowboy. It is a shame, as one would need to be able to saddle-up a horse and ride it into the wind if one would want roles as prince charming. Thank you Jader, it is a great postcard and I hope you have a successful Telenovela career, that is if you don’t end up in jail for murdering me because of this post.