I have been de-cluttering books in the study for the last 5 hours, that is covered in my earlier blogs. But I found one nice surprise at the end. Just when I was getting hungry, exhausted and fed up. I picked up an A4 size dog eared green and white album. It sparked JOY immediately, although I haven’t seen it for years. My old childhood stamp collection !
I collected stamps from an early age, maybe 6 or 7. They were only British stamps to start with and only from letters we got in the post. I used to steam them off with a boiling kettle and mount them in an exercise book. We used to travel up to my grandparents in Gloucester and there I discovered a tiny little shop that only sold stamps. That is what really got me started. The man in the shop was really helpful and from then on we visited his shop every time we went to Gloucester. Later still I joined the Bridgenorth Stamp Club and they sent me a book of stamps every month ” on approval “. That is where most of my pocket money went.
Gradually my collection got too big, so I decided concentrate on British Commonwealth stamps and bought the album I rediscovered today. That was over 50 years ago so I expect my stamps are worth a fortune by now 😀 I am probably a stamp millionaire !
What I really gained out of it was an encyclopaedic knowledge ideal for answering geography questions in TV quizzes.
Many years later when I was in London with some time to kill, I went to the Mecca of all stamp collectors — Stanley Gibbons stamp shop on the Strand. What a disappointment, it was like walking into a bank managers office or at least a very expensive jewellers. All my childhood innocence was shattered in a moment. I collected stamps for fun and the joy of finding out about far away foreign lands. It seems I should have been thinking about stamps as an investment. There weren’t any stamps you could buy in Stanley Gibbons for thruppence or even one a six. Nor was there a white haired old man to inspire a little boy about the wonders of countries many miles away.
Still I found my stamp album and it is worth a lot more than money to me.
A good de-cluttering experience !