Monday, November 27, 2006

Christmas stamps

Christmas is in less than one month now. Already in Paris you can see the Christmas decorations in the shops. And the frenzy of Christmas shopping has already started.
On the philatelic side, Christmas stamps are coming. I have received SETEMPE (the philatelic publication of South African post) where they describe the Christmas issue from South Africa. I found it so funny that I wanted to share it with you. In the article they explain that they wanted to give an African touch to this Christmas issue, this is why they have transformed Santa Claus into a Lion and the reindeers of his sleigh into African animals. Here is what it gives (this is a reproduction taken from South African Post website, not an actual scan of the stamps).

Not bad, isn’t it ? In the set, there is a sixth stamp for international mail picturing a close up of the Lion/Santa Claus.
I think that the stamps issuing policy of South Africa is rather interesting. They issue a low number of stamps (if I compare to our situation in France) and the stamps have always a relation to the country or the local culture. If the stamp does not picture a subject directly linked to Africa, they always try to give an African look, as for this Christmas issue. I think this is rare enough to be mentioned.

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