Stamping your Moleskine

800pxpilgrim_passport2

 
I’ve been interested for some time in collecting postmarks. It
gives notebooks some variety, but some people collect postmarks to
collect postmarks. I went the UN today with the express purpose of
finding out if they will stamp your notebook if you buy a postage
stamp. The answer to this is yes, you can have non-postal items
stamped, that’s the simple answer. The more complicated answer is that
if you are a fairly shy person and have a hard time asking strangers
for what seems an odd favor, this is not the hobby for you. I can
imagine this would be worse in a foreign country. I would be going OCD
over the passport and the tickets. Of course I would probably keep the
passport as a momento, and THAT has stamps…It’s cool. It looks great.
Maybe I would paste in the passport stamps. I might need a new passport
by the time I went anywhere again.

 

I am a
Moleskine traveller who has never been anywhere. Iowa, twice. Of course
New York is a world of it’s own, but I have never been out of the
country. I hate to fly. Planes are vaccum sealed. "Did I leave my
wallet in Minnesota?" (The high point of my travels is listening the
futuristic voice on the tram in the Minneapolis airport. I rode around
on it for a couple of hours, just wonderful.) Of course one cannot
smoke in airports, I’ve actually gone back out and then through
security. The planes I have been on are like Greyhounds that fly, and
sometimes the stewardess will look kind of haggard. And look at what
happened to Senator Craig…Be careful in the bathroom, someone might
tap your foot.

 

I
live a quiet bookish life. I’m not saying that I will never go off to
Europe. I will say (and I’ve been defensive on this point) that you
don’t have to go anywhere to have a fascinating journal. That I know.
Take your Moleskine and go hog wild documenting your travels and
putting footprints all over the globe (Thoreau is best ignored). Some
of us would prefer to have adventures in our own town, with our own
cat, not waking up in strange places and tripping on the furniture.

 

Poststamp
collecting is a pretty neat hobby. If you’re in a foreign country you
can use it as a date stamp. I think it adds a lot and it’s visually
appealing. I think that notebook types are mostly collectors anyway and
this seems like it could be a lot of fun. ESPECIALLY if you are
traveling. You want your trip writ in large and the more sights and
sounds and momentos you can jam into the thing the better. It’s
inexpensive–it seems you have to buy a stamp to get a stamp. Stamps
themselves are colorful, if you don’t have the patience for stamp
collecting, this is up your alley. Because they’re stamps from YOUR
trip, and you don’t need to whip out a set of tongs–it seems like one
of the best ways to go about this. It’s like saving the ticket stubs or
wine labels–paste them in too. It’s a no lose proposition.

Sophie Brown

Photo: Pilgrim passport, Santiago de Compostela/ Wikipedia

Print it in Moleskine MSK format
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2 Responses to Stamping your Moleskine

  1. Kahunna says:

    Nice story, Sophie. I’m also a passport/postal stamp collector and I’ve found it to be extremely difficulty to get a passport stamp in my journal and just slightly easier to get a postal stamp. I’ve been lucky enough to have traveled quite extensively in my life so far and I have been collecting postmarks since I started traveling internationally in 2001.

    It sometimes takes great effort to get a stamp since convincing someone to add a postmark into my book can get lost in translation, especially when neither knows each other’s language.

    Once I get one stamp though, the rest are easier. I convinced a postal worker in Marrakesh to stamp my book after showing him this page, in fact. He first said that postmarks are only for mail, but he was persuaded to add a postmark (on my birthday, of all days!) after seeing that I had stamps from other post offices.

    I tried to get a postmark in my journal in London, but they were adamant on not giving me one. Maybe it was because I wanted the postmark on top of a stamp showing the signing of the Declaration of Independence?

    The hardest stamps to get are passport stamps. I’ve only managed to convince one border control officer to stamp my book with the government stamp – at the border control when crossing the Adriatic into Croatia in 2004.

    If you’re interested in some of my collection and some tips on collecting stuff in your journal, you should check out this section of my site, which I believe was reported on Moleskinerie some time ago.

    http://www.kahunna.net/jtips.html

  2. Sophie Brown says:

    Thank you. Actually your story prompted this one

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