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Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Blast from the Past: Postcards From the Road, Fall 2007 Trip (Part 1)

A few days ago, I was clearing out my cubby and other storage spaces at the Independent Publishing Resource Center in advance of the impending move. (More about the move in an upcoming post.) I've been involved with the Center for almost eleven years, my most stable "relationship" in this town. With such a history with the IPRC, there were a lot of random things that I found in the course of the cleaning.

The most interesting thing I found was a series of postcards that I sent myself when I traveled cross-country in the fall of 2007. I've been sending postcards to myself from the road for several years. I was inspired to do this from my friend Paul Nama, who does the zine Adventures of Corpritboy. He put out a couple issues solely consisting of postcards he sent himself from his work-related travels.

I like using postcards as a way of keeping a journal. Postcards only have so much room for a message, and not much room at best. So it inspires me to choose my words carefully, no fluff. With its limitations the best thing I can do on a postcard is provide the feeling of the moment. Unlike a journal in a book, I won't actually see what I wrote again until I get home, and when I get the postcards from my P.O. Box I'm reminded of those moments on the road. And I also have a momento from the road.

I've incorporated these "postcards from the road" in various zines. And this set from Fall 2007 was intended to be included in the journal comic Trains, Bikes, and Automobiles. (Samples of that comic can be found here.) But even though I intended to scan these postcards and put them in the comic, somehow I never did. Did I just forget them?

Anyways, they are now unearthed and have been scanned in. I'll be sharing them over the course of the week. Hopefully they are legible; if you can't read them, let me know.

A brief rundown of the trip: During Sept-Nov 2007 I took trains (Amtrak) from my home in Portland, Oregon eastward to New Haven, Connecticut, where I grew up. From there I rode 500 miles (800 km) northward through New England into Montreal. From there I took trains (VIA Rail) eastward to Halifax. Then I got a ride to Toronto and another one to Detroit. From there, I made my way westward back to Portland via Amtrak again.

These first four postcards cover the trip from Portland to New Haven. Remember that you can click on the image to embiggen.


  1. I like the postcard idea and might steal it, myself. Also, I like your card choices, particularly the last two.

  2. Shawn, I think this is a wonderful idea! What great keepsakes form your travels on the road.

  3. I wish I'd though of that back in my long haul trucking days ('95 through my last year able to work in 12-08)...all I have now are faded memories (since any pics and journals burned in the house fire last Summer),sigh. AWESOME post,though,just gave me one of those head slapping moments,LOL! :)

    The Disabled Cyclist


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