March 15, 2021

3466 SIERRA LEONE - Man with clothes iron in Freetown

3466 Man with clothes iron in Freetown

Even if Sierra Leone is a resource-rich country, it remains among the world's poorest countries, with 2011 estimates indicating nearly 53% of Sierra Leoneans living below the poverty line, and a life expectancy of 52.2 years. I don't know when this photo was taken, but I think it's significant for the standard of living in this country. Such clothes irons (filled with hot coals, or heated in a fire or on a stove) are no longer used in Europe from 7-8 decades. 

March 14, 2021

1650, 2980, 3359, 3465 THAILAND (Bangkok) - Wat Pho, the Temple of the Reclining Buddha

2980 Wat Pho

Posted on 11.06.2015, 11.03.2017, 16.01.2020, 14.03.2021
Named after a monastery in India where Buddha is believed to have lived, Wat Pho (known also as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha), is a Buddhist temple in Phra Nakhon district, Bangkok, directly adjacent to the Grand Palace. Prior to the temple's founding, the site was a centre of education for traditional Thai medicine, and statues were created showing yoga positions. An enormous Buddha image from Ayuthaya's Wat Phra Si Sanphet was destroyed by the Burmese in 1767; King Rama I (1782-1809) incorporated its fragments to build a temple to enlarge and renovate the complex.

3359 Inside Wat Pho

The temple has sixteen gates around the complex guarded by Chinese giants carved out of rocks. These statues were originally imported as ballast on ship trading with China. The outer cloister has images of 400 Buddhas out of the 1200 originally bought by king Rama V. In terms of architecture, these are varied in different styles and postures, but these are evenly mounted on matching gilded pedestals. The image of reclining Buddha is 15m high and 43m long with his right arm supporting the head with tight curls on two box-pillows of blue, richly encrusted with glass mosaics.

1650 Reclining Buddha of Wat Pho

The complex, also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage, was restored and extended in the reign of King Rama III, and again in 1982. It consists of two walled compounds bisected by Soi Chetuphon running east-west. The northern one is where the reclining Buddha and massage school are found, and the southern one (Tukgawee) is a working Buddhist monastery with monks in residence and a school. Outside the temple, the grounds contain 91 chedis (stupas or mounds), four viharas (halls) and a bot (central shrine).

3465 Phra Mondop in Wat Pho

The 3m high and 4.5m long foot of Buddha displays are inlaid with mother-of-pearl. They are divided into 108 arranged panels, displaying the auspicious symbols by which Buddha can be identified like flowers, dancers, white elephants, tigers and altar accessories. Over the statue is a seven tiered umbrella representing the authority of Thailand. There are 108 bronze bowls in the corridor indicating the 108 auspicious characters of Buddha. People drop coins in these bowls as it is believed to bring good fortune, and to help the monks maintain the wat.

April 5, 2020

3464 BARBADOS - Morgan Lewis Windmill

3464 Morgan Lewis Windmill in Saint Andrew

Located in the northern parish of St. Andrew overlooking the eastern coastline of the island and the Scotland District, Morgan Lewis Windmill, is the last sugar windmill to operate in Barbados, and one of only two working in the world today, the other being at Betty's Hope Estate on Antigua. The mill stopped operating in 1947, but was dismantled for restoration and reopened in 1999 as museum. During the 'crop' season, February through July, its sails are put in place and it operates one Sunday in each month, grinding cane and providing cane juice.

March 26, 2020

3463 SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS - Christmas in Nevis

Named after the sugar cane (once the most important resource of the islands Saint Kitts and Nevis) and mas-short for masquerade, the Sugar Mas Carnival takes place every year between the penultimate friday of November and the last weekend of January, having the climax around Christmas. During this period, streets become a spectrum of colour as various processions and parades bring music and dancing to their every corner and the sounds of soca and calypso can be heard at every turn.

March 23, 2020

3462 FINLAND (North Karelia) - Bomban Orthodox prayer chapel in Nurmes

3462 Bomban Orthodox prayer chapel in Nurmes

Between 1977 and 1978, on the shore of lake Pielinen, about three kilometers from the center of the town of Nurmes, was erected the Bomba house, a copy (a little bigger) of a house build by Jegor Bombin in 1855 in Suojärvi. Suojärvi was part of the Karelian areas that Finland lost to Soviet Union in 1944 as a result of continuation war between the two countries, and Karelians were evacuated from the areas. A full Karelian village was built around the replica to supplement the atmosphere and the experience of the area.

March 18, 2020

3461 BRAZIL (Pernambuco) - Brazilian Atlantic Islands: Fernando de Noronha and Atol das Rocas Reserves (UNESCO WHS)

3461 Fernando de Noronha island.

Of indescribable beauty, the Fernando de Noronha Marine National Park, located at a distance of about 340 km off the Brazilian coast, is formed by volcanic peaks of a submerged mountain chain. Nearly 70% of the main island of Fernando de Noronha, 21 smaller islands and islets of the archipelago, as well as most adjacent waters to a depth of 50 metres are part of the property.  The Atol das Rocas Biological Reserve, the only atoll in the South Atlantic, is located about 150 km west of Fernando de Noronha. It is an elliptical reef including two small islands surrounded by a marine reserve.

3460 SINGAPORE (Central Region) - Chinatown

Old shop houses in the heart of Chinatown and towering skyscrapers in the central business district at the background.
3460 Old shop houses in the heart of Chinatown and towering skyscrapers
in the central business district at the background.

Chinese Singaporeans constituted 76.2% of the country's citizens, making them the largest ethnic group in Singapore. Outside Greater China, Singapore is the only country in the world where people of Chinese descent constitute a majority of the population and are well represented in all levels of Singaporean society, politically and economically. Located within the Outram district in the Central Area, Chinatown is considerably less of an enclave than it once was. However, the precinct does retain significant historical and cultural significance.

March 13, 2020

3459 SLOVENIA (Slovene Littoral) - The Piran salt pans

3459 A salt-pan family in a traditional house in Piran
during salt harvesting in summer.

Piran, considered by some the most beautiful town on the Slovenian coast, grew with the help of salt. The salt pans, where the world-class fleur de sel (flower of salt) is still produced today using age-old methods, were the reason why the picturesque Mediterranean walled town flourished. Established in 804, the Piran Salt Pans encompassed the salt pans in the area of today’s marina (Lucija, Portorož), the smaller Strunjan Salt Pans, and the larger Sečovlje Salt Pans. The areas of all the preserved salt pans are now landscape parks.

3458 SINGAPORE (Central Region) - Boat Quay on Singapore River

3458 Boat Quay on Singapore River with OCBC Centre in background

The Singapore River is approximately 3.2 kilometers long, runs parallel to Alexandra Road, through Singapore's central business district, and feeds into the Marina Reservoir in the southern part of the city. At one time, Singapore River was the very lifeblood of the colony, the trade artery, the center of commercial activity, the heart of entrepot trade, and the vessel of importance. Some parts of this area include quays such as Boat Quay, situated upstream from the mouth of the river.

March 12, 2020

3457 UNITED KINGDOM (Cayman Islands) - George Town

With a population of 40,200, George Town, situated on Grand Cayman, is not only the capital of the Cayman Islands, but also the largest city (by population) of all the British Overseas Territories, and a popular port for Caribbean cruise ships. This quaint town is host to a variety of activities – including luxurious glass-bottom boat tours, fascinating rum distillery tours, beautiful art galleries, top-notch shopping that includes duty free shops, delicious eateries and an historical museum.

3456 RUSSIA (Moskow Oblast) - Gorki Leninskiye

 Leninsky District of Moscow Oblast
3456 Gorki Leninskiye

Located 10 kilometers south of Moscow city limits, Gorki Leninskiye (meaning "Lenin's Gorki") is placed on a high bank of the River Turovka close to where it flows into the River Pakhra. The estate of Gorki belonged to various Muscovite noblemen from the 18th century. Zinaida Morozova, the widow of the magnat Savva Morozov, purchased it in 1909, and engaged the most fashionable Russian architect, Fyodor Schechtel, to remodel the mansion in the then current Neoclassical style, complete with a six-column Ionic portico.

March 11, 2020

3455 GERMANY (Hamburg) - Rickmer Rickmers

Rickmer Rickmers is a three masted barque permanently moored as a museum ship in Hamburg, near the Cap San Diego steamer, also a museum ship. After almost 90 years of sailing the seven seas, the ship was turned into a museum in 1983. Today, visitors can roam the decks, exploring the crew's and officers' quarters, the galley and even the engine room (this windjammer was powered by wind and, if required,  by steam and diesel engines). The hull is 97 meters long, 12.20 meters wide, the depth was 6 meters.

3454 BELARUS (Vitebsk) - The Assumpton Cathedral in Vitebsk

3454 The Assumpton Cathedral in Vitebsk

Built in a picturesque place, on the high bank of the Western Dvina River, the Assumption Cathedral is one of the outstanding monuments of the architecture of Vitebsk. It is also the only cathedral in Vitebsk, the lower active layer of which is located underground. The Assumption mountain, where now the cathedral stands, has been used for construction of religious buildings during thousands of years. Initially, there was a pagan shrine, and with the birth of Christianity a church was built at this place, which burned more than once in fires.

March 9, 2020

3453 GERMANY (Saxony) - Elbe Sandstone Mountains

3453 Elbe Sandstone Mountains - The Bastei bridge in Saxon Switzerland

The Elbe Sandstone Mountains is a mountain range straddling the border between Saxony in southeastern Germany and the North Bohemian region of the Czech Republic, with about three-quarters of the area lying on the German side. The river Elbe breaks through the mountain range in a steep and narrow valley. Their highest peak (723 m) is in Bohemia on the left bank of the river. The most striking characteristic of this deeply dissected rocky mountain range is the extraordinary variety of terrain within the smallest area.

March 8, 2020

3452 FRANCE (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur) - Les Baux-de-Provence

3452 View of Les Baux-de-Provence and its castle from the northwest.

Les Baux-de-Provence is a commune in Southern France, which has a spectacular position in the Alpilles mountains, set atop a rocky outcrop that is crowned with a ruined castle overlooking the plains to the south. Although already inhabited in the Bronze Age, it didn't really start growing until the medieval period, when the area became the stronghold of a feudal domain covering 79 towns and villages. The fortress was built from the 11th to the 13th century. The princes of Baux controlled Provence for many years and they gained a formidable reputation.

3451 NEW ZEALAND (North Island) - Cape Egmont Lighthouse and Mount Taranaki

This lighthouse was built in London in 1864. A year later, the cast-iron segments were shipped to New Zealand and assembled on Mana Island, north of Wellington, near Cook Strait. Because it was sometimes confused with the Pencarrow Head light at the entrance to Wellington Harbour, which led to several shipping accidents, it was dismantled and moved to Cape Egmont, close to the volcanic cone of Mount Taranaki. The huge cast iron sections would have been ferried ashore by surfboats, then dragged up to the site by bullock teams.

March 6, 2020

3450 ETHIOPIA (Amhara) - Tomb of Adam - part of Rock-Hewn Churches, Lalibela (UNESCO WHS)

part of Rock-Hewn Churches, Lalibela (UNESCO WHS)

Impressive in its simplicity, the Tomb of Adam is a huge square block of stone stands in a deep trench in front of the western face of Biete Golgotha Mikael (House of Golgotha Mikael). The block has been hollowed out, the ground floor serving as the western entrance to the first group of churches. The upper floor houses a hermit's cell. Again it is a cross that is the only decoration of this "tomb ". The large opening in the eastern wall provides light for the cell and has the shape of a harmonious croix pattee with flat-pitched finials.

March 5, 2020

0019, 3441, 3449 SINGAPORE (Central Region) - Raffles Place

0019 Raffles Place in Singapore - Merlion, Fullerton Hotel,
and skyscrapers in the business centre (1)

Located in the Downtown Core within the Central Area, Raffles Place is the centre of the Financial District of Singapore and is located south of the mouth of the Singapore River. It was first planned and developed in the 1820s as Commercial Square to serve as the hub of the commercial zone of Singapore in Raffles Town Plan. It was renamed Raffles Place in 1858 and now features some of the tallest buildings and landmarks of the country.

3441 Raffles Place in Singapore by night

The Merlion statue (8.6m hight), made by Lim Nang Seng in 1972, was placed in Merlion Park. Designed by Fraser Brunner in 1964 for the logo of the Singapore Tourism Board, this symbol of Singapore is a mythical creature with the head of a lion and the body of a fish. The body of the statue is made of cement, skin from porcelain plates and eyes from red teacups.

3449 Raffles Place in Singapore - Merlion, Fullerton Hotel,
and skyscrapers in the business centre (2)

The highest six buildings that are visible in the back in the postcard 0019 are, from left to right: Hitachi Tower (179m - completed in 1992), Republic Plaza (280m - completed in 1995), Singapore Land Tower (190m - completed in 1980), One Raffles Place (280m - completed in 1986), Maybank Tower (175m - completed in 2001), and United Overseas Bank Plaza / UOB Plaza (280m - completed in 1995).

March 4, 2020

3448 UNITED STATES (Maryland) - Chesapeake Bay Bridge

Gov. William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge

The Chesapeake Bay Bridge is a major dual-span bridge spanning the Chesapeake Bay, and connecting the state's rural Eastern Shore region with the urban Western Shore. The original span, opened in 1952 and with a length of 6.9 km, was the world's longest continuous over-water steel structure. The parallel span was added in 1973. The bridge is officially named the Gov. William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge after William Preston Lane Jr. who, as the 52nd Governor of Maryland, initiated its construction in the late 1940s.

March 3, 2020

0071, 3447 SINGAPORE (Central Region) - Fullerton Hotel and Cavenagh Bridge

Fullerton Hotel Singapore
3447 Fullerton Hotel in broad daylight

Named after Robert Fullerton, the first Governor of the Straits Settlements (1826–1829), the Fullerton Hotel, whose the northern end covers the site of Fort Fullerton was commissioned in 1919 as part of the Crown colony's centennial celebrations. The building was designed as an office building by Major P.H. Keys, and was opened in 1928. Initially, General Post Office covered the two lower floors (until 1996), and the exclusive Singapore Club rented premises on the upper floors (until 1961).

0071 Fullerton Hotel and Cavenagh Bridge by night

In the WWII the building was the one in which General Percival discussed with Sir Shenton the possibility of surrendering Singapore, and subsequently became the headquarters of the Japanese Military Administration. In 1997, Sino Land (Hong Kong) Company Ltd acquired the Fullerton Building and converted it into a five-star luxury hotel, officially opened in 2001. Its architecture follow the principals of 20th-century Beaux-Arts tradition of classicism. Relating to the design, it is largely Monumental and Ornamental.