About Alexandra Heep

About Alexandra Heep: The internet has allowed allowed Alexandra to maintain a semblance of life when encountering an unexpected, lingering health crisis. The Internet is a lifeline which not only allows her to remain connected to friends, but also survive, via writing.While Alexandra Heep is her pen name, she does not hide behind it. Instead, she used it to brand herself on the Internet and to create opportunities.

Alexandra published her first book, a collection of her best poems, on July 11, 2012. You can buy it at Lulu.com

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Thursday, April 16, 2020

A to Z Challenge 2020: N is for North Korea

When I started collecting postcards in 2017, I figured that the hardest postcard to obtain would be from North Korea and that it would take a stroke of good luck. Well, I have found out that there are a couple of places on this earth from which to get mail that are more difficult.

I do know that you can't send mail to North Korea from the USA, so a direct trade was out of the question. Also, there is no Internet contact because regular people there don't have that option. Strangely enough, North Koreans are allowed to send mail to the USA.

However, every piece of mail in North Korea gets read by officials first and censored, as needed. That applies to any mailings, not just those that go to the USA. So, how did I get this postcard?

In a strange way, it was not as difficult as I thought. On Facebook, I found a person from China who had a friend going to North Korea regularly. This Chinese person asked for specific postcards, and in turn gave his friend the guidelines of whom to send postcards to from North Korea.

I lucked out: Usually, people who send cards from rare countries ask for rare countries in turn. The USA is not rare, but I offered to send a copper postcard to China, and he accepted. The stipulation was to get a hand cancellation of the stamp at the post office. I lucked out and found one person at the USPS who knew how to process that (they are supposed to, but that is another story).

Fun fact about North Korea: Rollerblading is one of the most popular pastimes, and the country has many rollerblading venues.

As postcards go, this isn't my most favorite, but it is my most treasured one. I have no idea what the design is or what the text says. (I was not able to choose a particular postcard, they sent what they had). My guess is that it is from a North Korean TV program. Interestingly enough, it has not been censored in any way, and the cancellation is fantastically clear.


Jade Li said...

Sounds like you have a lot of adventures on your quest for postcards. Glad you were able to get this one from N Korea. I like the stamp on it, from what I can see.

Langley Cornwell said...

It's great that you figured out a way to get mail from N. Korea. I wonder if we'll get to a letter that you don't have a postcard from? Of course, I'll keep reading to find out. :-)

Marie Anne said...

I see where it mentions kimchi, and that is indeed spicy! A treasure indeed.

Glorygarden@msn.com said...

Rollerblading?? Who knew?