Friday, 4 June 2010

A snailfarm on the Åland islands

From Scotland we move on to the Åland islands (an archipelago in the Baltic Sea and an autonomous, demilitarized, monolingually Swedish-speaking region and historical province of Finland). This is quite an old card, sent to me by my Finnish penpal Piia, with whom I've been writing since I was about 13 (although we don't write to each other that frequently anymore. Life happens...). I can't really remember for sure, but I *think* this might have been from a school trip she made to Åland, in 1999.

As you can see, she visited a snailfarm. :D I couldn't find much info about the place, but it would seem like Alandia Escargots Ab is a snailfarm close to the castle of Kastelholm, in Sund, on the Åland islands. On the website it is explained that they offer safaris to to groups, and you can also have "a tastebit
of 1 snail in butter, bread and a glass of cider". Interesting... I don't think this is the first thing that would come to mind when you hear about these islands!

I kind of wish Piia hadn't written on the picture side of the card, but then again, it does make it more "her". As she's helpfully written on the card, you can see the castle of Kastelholm in the background. ..and the snail is now dead. :P

They have their own stamps on the Åland islands, I've always thought they are very pretty so I had to include it here. This one was issued in 1997, I couldn't find much info about it but it would seem to be from a set of 4 stamps representing Spring Flowers. This one here is the Common Hepatica.

The card was mailed from one of those big cruise ships that travel between Finland and Sweden, hence the special cancellation.

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