Tag Archives: postcards

Festive Greetz Cards Scrapbook Time

Oh let’s enjoy the woodstove & treasured postal items (maybe from you!)

In front of a wood stove, Dave stashes cards from the “string of honour” into archival book and recounting tales of the wonderful folks who sent greeting cards and letters to Tsuchida Cottage.

Along with: banter about having several scrapbooks on-the-go at all times; special collections and extensive correspondence; topsy turvy start to the year; “lap projects” like mending and scrapbooking; thoughts about last year (lots of paperwork!) and this year (letting go); and usual digressions, meanderings and anecdotes (i.e. hanging stereo speakers and maybe something about solar panels) and namechecks from various podcasts.

Post’d: new year mail-outs / postal odds and ends (& what happens next)

A well decorated special new year dropbox at a post office on a quest with my buddy Mac

“Good news” is over 300 pieces of postal mail dispatched the last 4-5 weeks. Mostly postcards but also bunch of special packets (some were far overdue) + typed (poorly) a few long letters – still a few more on my list and then have to pause / slow down for a while.

One of the batches, heading out internationally with some fantastic (specially ordered) 70¥ stamps, celebrating an anniversary of Japan and France, postal relations, along with air mail seals (and a CD received from a friend in Fukushima)
On a drive to visit an arborist colleague, in another town, spotted a couple post boxes from the car, and just couldn’t resist myself since we were at a red light, seemed like fate
There was a lot of red ink, stamping, because well of course we have our own “year of the rabbit” stamps, so wore out the previous red ink pad (which I really really liked) and ordered a new one, yeah it’s really the big time
Have acquired at least a dozen free calendars and placed each appropriately throughout the house, and in this case, in the kura (to be clear, there’s also one in the carport/workshop)
Of course, this dude was helping out with the stamping
Along with the “usual” high volume of standard New Year’s cards, were a few special dossiers, sent to folks needing a little spark, due to being shut, ins, hospitalized, suffering, loss, or otherwise did something very special. an opportunity to share some of my little arts and crafts to maybe inspire others.
Though our dear rabbit Maru-chan is featured on the new year card – because of course it is “year of the rabbit” – sadly, my design skills squished him in and he was often covered by a stamp required for postal delivery. I attempted to apologize and explain the situation – he just wants to sit by the fire. I think we’ll both be all right.
Thank you to all our wonderful correspondents, both sending and receiving is a pleasure

The next “big project” is getting ready for a trip #BCInvasion in April/May. Focus is “family, friends, parks, and gardens” 1st time for my darlings, and I’m a little intimidated to deal with lack of public toilets, tax/tips and other social connections, but will get through it. And yes, of course I’ve made a Google doc plan and “poster art”.

New Year Cards – postal drop & related evidence

New Year day in Japan is better than Christmas for postal mail enthusiasts when a big stack of cards arrives with a “thud” – complete with “magic numbers” which you look up in the newspaper to see if you won some prize, {one time I won stamps}

PS about 885 million of these special New Year’s cards are delivered on New Year’s Day – yes, that many, yes by postal workers working on New Year’s Day

Postal worker zipping around on special bike, delivering items to the Munetade shrine

PPS we sent about 250 and so much thanks to all the folks who sent festive cards to us – Will be savored, inventoried archived, scrapbook’d and thanked.

Tiger Year 2022: Flashback Musings in Present Moment

A meandering rundown from the kura barn about New Year routines, foods and rituals in Japan, plus usual gabba gabba about postcards, lucky numbers and postal obsessions… but this time featuring various hats and even more personal translucency, unnecessary archaeology, remarks about improving the campsite, being a good hubbo and papa, health situation, life admin tasks, blank sheets, re-caps of projects: poems, pods, vids, trips – and various anecdotes about wonderful pals, probably you ya beauty.

Very important annotations

Special hellos to friends in places where I left pieces of my heart – important for a rambling type with out that “regular hometown” vibe.

Accordion-style Postcard Scrapbook hangout (with jazz and sage)

various beloved correspondence, mostly post cards, cards and whatnot, taped and glued with affection, maybe from you

Hangout in the Kura barn while i light sage, spin Ornette Coleman and fill up an accordion-style scrapbook with postcards and other postal treats using various sticky corners, washi tape, double-sided tape, envelopes and odds and ends. No chit-chat (not even my lovely beard), just ambient craft session.

Grab a chair if you want some company or otherwise have a notion.

Assembling Kerouac Dossiers and Poetic Letters, in the Kura #video

Assembling Jack Kerouac ephemera dossiers and stamping postcards, scribbling letters while chatting, grouching about misplacing things and listening to REM’s “Fables of the Reconstruction.”

many items, carefully curated, into envelopes (with splendid stamps of course)

Hang out, no big deal.

PS Wanna get some artifacts for your archive and amusement? Be sure to watch the “Kerouac in Kobe” video to the end.

Bonus from Simon Warner, author of “text, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll” and writer/curator of highly recommendedRock and the Beat Generation” newsletter, who says:

Thank you, Dave Olson, for sharing such a great selection of Kerouac in Kobe 2020/2021 exhibition artefacts: what a wonderful gathering of programmes and images, text, recordings and postcards!

Look out for an interview at Rock and the Beat Generation with the Canadian bodhisattva of Japanese Beat very soon
Simon Warner shares the assortment of Kerouac in Kobe artefacts / which arrived to UK in about a week from Japan, hooray for postal services!
it’s not always easy, but I keep on trying one way or another.

Charcoal, Poetry & Postal + topics of varied interest

it’s cardigan season so let’s discuss a bonanza of topics, shall we?

While the industrious senior ladies are cleaning the house, I fire up a machine to tell you about the following items:

several pleasing items
Continue reading Charcoal, Poetry & Postal + topics of varied interest

Snaps: JJ visits Tsuchida cottage & kura studio

i love my kura studio!

My friend J.J. Walsh – who hosts a great series of videos focused on sustainability and people doing interesting things around eco-ness in Japan – popped by for a quick visit today and snapped these fun photos of me in my mysterious little world. {

JJ is so much sparkle

She is an absolute ray of sunshine, constantly curious and quick to laugh. We rocked through about 138 topics in a 20 minute visit including Ryoko’s charcoal kiln, our compost set up, our house renovation with the charcoaled suji siding, reused/repurposed furniture and materials, turmeric and ginger… and nearby master carpenter Jon Stollemeyer‘s recent project.

You may be caught the two segments we did together, one about my “life reinvention“ and another one about the joys of Okayama}.

new postcard stash

And she got to check out my beloved sign post in real life and I told her some of the backstory of the important places on the sign (many hospitals and clinics part of my healing ramble) and, as it goes, the subject of a new series of postcards which of course, i gave her a fresh one.

me in my element

I was doing a session in the kura barn studio preparing dossiers of artifacts from the “Kerouac in Kobe” exhibit to folks who reacted/spread the word and we took a quick walk around the yard as well before she sped on down the road in her electric car.

Writing Postcards & Typing Letters in the Kura studio (with records)

‘with a weird expression on my face as I try to hold up my glasses with my nose’

Writing postcards, putting on stamps, typing letters (with a weird expression on my face as I try to hold up my glasses with my nose), scribbling addresses, stamping inky stamps… and whatnot in historic kura barn studio in provincial Japan with a shaky camera while listening to John K Sampson (of The Weakerthans from Winnipeg) on vinyl.

That’s it, nothing else happens, come hang out if you want.

Artifacts: Nepal Relief Efforts round-up, Vancouver, 2015

In 2015, Nepal suffered a series of cataclysmic earthquakes, devastating villages… {I suppose it’s worth noting that this was also in the week of some other conundrums and tragedies involving the royal family and cataclysmic change in government and society in general}.

Anyhow, living in Vancouver at a time, and feeling lousy about my then-new-found health situation, I tried to participate in various relief efforts and *at least* document and amplify as best i could.

riffs and musings about Nepal

Since my childhood fascination with the Himalaya mountains and the thought of drinking yak milk tea high altitude, villages, Nepal held a place in my heart. {I also have a dear friend from the country who’s helped me out in multiple times of disarray}.

As it goes, a few years later, I finally made my first visit to the country for an extended Ayurveda treatment and was unbelievably charmed and fascinated by the intrepid and kind nature of the Nepali people.

As such, this post is simply to remind myself, others and history about the grassroots efforts that went on at the time to bring relief.

Postcards: Specifically, I did my own campaign of “Postcards for Nepal” in which anyone who demonstrated some activity to support Nepal relief efforts, would receive one of my handmade postcards. Not a big deal i realize but you do with what you have.

Postcards from Nepal relief

evidence of postcards for Nepal

Campaign posters: And, as is my habit, I documented handbills and flyers for other relief efforts and campaigns and did my best to donate and promote Nepal relief efforts and admired the grassroots and creativity of many of the initiatives. I see you.

another really interesting grassroots initiative to send medical equipment. As I recall, there was also some early instances of 3-D printing put to use during this time

Food: I also worked with then-nearby Gurkha Nepal restaurant who were hosting weekly lunches and dinners at which proceeds went to the relief efforts.

checking in from Gurkha restuarant

Some really nice guys working there (as I understand, they subsequently sold and moved on). Also noting that i chronically misspelled the name of the restaurant.

Continue reading Artifacts: Nepal Relief Efforts round-up, Vancouver, 2015