Thursday, October 31, 2013

Welcome to the USA!

A few months ago, we moved to the United States of America. We ended up in a lovely house in a very nice neighborhood. During the first few weeks, many neighbors came to our house to introduce themselves and welcome us with home made pies and cookies! I had seen this being done in movies... but it never occurred to me that people actually (still) do this. A very nice surprise for all of us. Although we have left many friends behind in Asia, it is nice to live closer to many of my hippo-friends. And it were a few very special hippo-friends that made us feel even more welcome. Not long after we moved in, this wonderful Limoges (hippo) Box was delivered. A "Welcome-to-the-USA" gift. For this photograph I laid it down, because I wanted to show the inside of this pretty box as well. It is not only a very nice piece, it is also my first Limoges Box. Dear Sheila and John, thank you for sending this lovely gift, welcoming us to your country, your amazing friendship.... and for making all of us laugh so much! Dart gun anyone? ;-)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Shaking Hippos

And what did you think? Hippos living in Antarctica... shaking because they are cold? Or did you think about shaking real hippos, to wake them up? Most likely, you saw the picture first, and already knew this is about (hippo) salt and pepper shakers! Another first. As a collector, I am clearly an amateur, because I know of some "professional" collectors, having a Hippo-Salt-and-Pepper-Shakers-Collection, as part of their hippo collection. Apparently I have always looked in the wrong places, because I could not find them. I was so happy when I could buy my first set during the the Annual International  Hippopotamus Society Convention / Reunion, taking place in Denver, Colorado - USA, September 2012. Unfortunately, I can't remember who brought them, so if you read this, please let me know. I would like to be able to thank you personally for bringing these shakers. You really made my day. And then, that same year, I got a set of lovely salt and pepper shakers as a Christmas gift (see post: Keep Out?) So who knows, maybe it will not be long, before I have a Hippo-Salt-and-Pepper-Shakers-Collection too!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Beads of Beauty

When you know somebody is a collector, it makes things easy and difficult at the same time. Easy, because you always know what to get that person for birthdays and or special occasions. Difficult, because of the stress: "Does he or she has this already?" "Would he or she like this?" And what if you can't find anything at all? For my parents in law it is particularly difficult, because they are living so far away, so "casually-checking-out-what-Lien-already-has" is not really possible for them. And adding to this... hippos are not very easy to find. To me, it makes hippo presents in general very special, because I know it takes some effort and special attention. This beaded beauty was a gift for my birthday this year, a real treat! Dear Zwany and Jan, thank you for giving me this lovely hippo present. And just for the record: No! I did not have it yet, and Yes! I love it very much!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Are you coming along, or what?

At least one reader of my blog will recognize this hippo immediately! I had brought two of them to Denver, last year, to give away during the Hippo-Games (see posts: Maryann and Hipporita Time). I had bought this hippo for myself some time ago at the Chatuchak (JJ) Market in Bangkok, Thailand. I thought it would make a perfect gift for the game. When I came back to this shop I found two more hippos, and decided to buy them both (I felt bad to split them up ;-)). I made several pictures at different angles of my own hippo, but I liked this pose best. It looks like he wants to say: Are you coming along, or what? Dear Diane, I am very happy they have found a loving home. Just now,  I think it is more likely that my hippo is turning its head and greets you: Sa wa dee kaaahhhh!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Kong Fu Po

Every collector knows that "the find" can show up at any, and often, most unexpected places. A long time ago, I was doing some grocery shopping in an "Asian Supermarket". A rather dodgy looking place, with freezers scattered all over the place and only a few working tube lights. But it was the best place to find a great assortment of Indonesian chilly pastes, frozen shrimps and egg noodles. While zigzagging around freezers and piles of boxes, I found this hippo, just sitting there, between the bottles of oyster sauce and "long-life" noodles. Made in China, and lost? It was a very surreal sight, I could not believe my eyes. It looks rather fancy but it is made of a very light-weight kind of plastic. If it were ceramic and larger, it could easily have been the center piece of my collection, because the details and colors are quite nice. Now, it is part of the "plastic-pod"... standing out, because it is definitely the most beautiful plastic-y one. Maybe I should create a "curiosity-pod"... first member: Kong Fu Po.