Rajapaksa’s achievements via postage stamps

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Today marks six months since the fall of our last moustachioed tyrant and I couldn’t help wondering, just how many of his glorious achievements were celebrated via postage stamp?

2010 saw the issue of a stamp featuring the Magam Ruhunupura Mahinda Rajapaksa Port or quite simply, the Hambanthota port. Featuring a small portrait of the man himself, it is a typical “look at me, look what I built” piece of philately.

Magam-Ruhunupura-Rajapaksa-Port

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On today’s game of Find The Country…

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So I came across this whilst poking through a bunch of unsorted stamps and realised I had no clue what country it was from. You know what that means… time for a little sleuthing!

Bulgaria: 1403 Revolt against the Turks

Note: Yes I know I could have posted a picture on one of many available stamp forums and probably got an answer within minutes but I don’t always like to do things the easy way. 

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Sri Lanka 1970 New UPU HQ Stamp

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Look I think its great that the Universal Postal Union (UPU) got a brand new building way back in 1970 and that Sri Lanka felt the need to issue a completely unimaginative stamp to commemorate this glorious event but why on earth did they mark the face value in the red stamp using fractions?

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150th Anniversary of the National Hospital

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I’ve been putting off posting this for months because it is so uninspiring. Basically, 20 March 2015 saw Sri Lanka issue yet another dull stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of, what is at least a useful local institution – the National Hospital. This would have been so much nicer if they left off the people, because the building sketch on the right is actually quite interesting. If you collect medical or architecture related themes, you may want to add this to your collection.

hospital copy

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No wait, here is Vijaya

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Having ranted at length about the lack of Sri Lankan monarchs on stamps, I have been forced to mince a few words with the discovery of a 1956 stamp featuring Vijaya’s arrival in Sri Lanka. However, my point was that we do not have any stamps with a Sri Lankan king as the primary subject, in a dignified, portrait like format. Just to prove my seriousness and dedication to this cause, I have pored over my ENTIRE Sri Lankan collection AGAIN (with a magnifying glass this time). Here’s what I found regarding kings on stamps.

1956

Arrival-from-King-Vijaya-by-Ceylon

This stamp of Vijaya and Kuveni was issued to celebrate 2500 years of Buddhism. What the fuck does Buddhism have to do with Vijaya’s landing in Thambapanni? Surely we are not saying that Vijaya brought us Buddhism? This stamp was issued post independence, else I would have imagined that a clueless white colonial dude designed it.

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Sri Lankan Avurudhu stamps

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Today is the Sinhala and Tamil New Year or “Avurudhu” as celebrated by the Sinhalese and “Puthandu” as celebrated by Tamils throughout Sri Lanka. You probably didn’t know that and care much less, but in my 65,610 km² of the world, it is a rather big deal and considered to be a time for family, tradition and food. Except for the food, I find the whole rigmarole extremely tedious and am only comforted at the thought of a possible new stamp issue. This year again however, there seems to be no new year themed stamp forthcoming.

If the Chinese New Year can instigate its own global philatelic revolution, you have to wonder why the Sri Lankan one can’t? Admittedly, we are neither a ginormous country nor do we have a cool animal zodiac forming part of the overall schtick, but our patronising traditions (no, I will NOT kneel to worship my elders thank you very much) and eyerollworthy games (telling me to wolf down a sugar bun in the fastest possible time is just WAY too triggering) should be interesting enough to the rest of the world. Don’t you think?

Anyway, I thought I’d take a gander down our proud nation’s philatelic history to see what we’ve managed to produce on the Avurudhu theme so far:

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May your stamps be hoppy this Easter

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Wasn’t I just saying that Easter should be full of bunnies and chocolate eggs as opposed to misery and suffering? At least the Czech Republic seems to have got their priorities in order with this funny bunny waiter stamp. Here’s my ranking of the best Easter stamp designs of 2015.

#7: Trust the Vatican to issue the most boring stamp on the list. A work by the unknown Master of the Crucifix of Trevi depicting the risen Christ, I can appreciate this stamp as art or history but not necessarily as the most interesting depiction of Easter.

Vatican - Easter 2015 stamp

Vatican – Easter 2015 stamp

#6: Serbia went a bit nuts and put religious imagery on an Easter egg so they get points for originality if not anything else.

Serbia - Easter 2015 stamp

Serbia – Easter 2015 stamp

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Two surprise incoming mail

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Don’t you just love getting unexpected mail from strangers!

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The Mystery of Solomon’s Hairline

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Sri Lanka’s Solomon West Ridgeway Dias (SWRD for sanity’s sake) Bandaranaike was honoured in several stamps both during and after his rule as Prime Minister. His stamps are relatively common so I never gave them much thought besides, let’s face it, he’s got one helluva boring face. Then I discovered something hilarious.

SWRD Bandaranaike

Uptight nationalist wanker with distinctive hairline – image via newsfirst.lk

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