Stepfamily Issues

Personal stories about stepfamilies, childhood and general family issues.

August 10, 2007

stamping out a careerpath

Riley is 18 and has been a stamp collector, a philatelist, since childhood. Appropriately, she recently started a career with postal services! Her aim is to get promoted to the division dealing with new stamps - where she expects to shine.

"I believe we all know our vocation by the time we start high school," says Riley, "and I knew mine from about the age of eight."

"I had a passion for stamp collecting and it's never left me."

"This passion started when my mother cleared out the attic and came across an old stamp collection that my father had started as a boy."

"The collection was in a cheap album and she was going to sell it in a garage sale - or throw it away - but I begged her to give it to me because I was fascinated by all the colorful stamps in it - most of which were from other countries."

"I spent many happy hours looking through the old album," says Riley, "and when I was a little older I transferred all the old stamps to a new album and started stamp collecting in earnest."

"I used the library to locate philately books that valued the old stamps, and my mother was very surprised to learn that she might have thrown away a treasure!"

"As it turned out," sighs Riley, "I lost the original collection in a house fire but I started again with a brand new collection."

"I spent all of my pocket money on buying stamps from dealers," laughs Riley, "and all I wanted for my birthday or Christmas was the latest set of stamps put out by the post office."

"Like most collections," explains Riley, "stamps are an investment and I'm not only enjoying looking at my stamps but also making money from them."

"But of course I'd never sell the collection," says Riley. "I suppose my collection will end up in an attic one day like my father's collection did!"

"No," laughs Riley, "my father didn't become a postal worker but he obviously didn't have the same passion for stamps that I do."

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