One more card for today, and what a treat it is! This is my first written and stamped postcard from French Guiana, one of those places I never thought I'd receive a postcard from one day. ..well, I didn't even know of the country before I joined Postcrossing :P It looks like a proper tropical paradise, must be a wonderful place to visit.
French Guiana is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department located on the northern Atlantic coast of South America. It has borders with two nations: Brazil to the east and south, and Suriname to the west. Its 83,534 km2 have a very low population density of less than 3 /km2, with almost half of its 229,000 people in 2009 living in the urban area of Cayenne, its capital.
The addition of the adjective "French" in English comes from colonial times when five such colonies existed (The Guianas), namely from west to east: Spanish Guiana (now Guayana Region in Venezuela), British Guiana (now Guyana), Dutch Guiana (now Suriname), French Guiana, and Portuguese Guiana (now Amapá, a state in far northern Brazil). French Guiana and the two larger countries to the north and west, Guyana and Suriname, are still often collectively referred to as the Guianas and comprise one large shield landmass.
French Guiana is one of those places that don't issue their own stamps, so French stamps are used instead. I do wonder why the cancellation doesn't mention anything about the mailing place, but then French cancellations are quite confusing to me sometimes anyway. :p