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Blog > Postcrossing Connections: StetsFlauschig and ybur


Today we bring you a heartwarming and international friendship story, made of many postcards, emails, meetups attended together… and Kofola, a soft drink from Czech Republic!

Anni (aka stetsflauschig) tells the story:

"So I want to share about my longest Postcrossing friendship, which is still holding up! 😊

I think it started in 2014, when I organized the first Postcrossing meeting in my city, Dresden. Back in those days my username was Fireblossom. My dear friend Vladena (ybur) attended the meeting with her two daughters and some other Czech postcrossers. It was such a lovely time and I was invited to join a Czech meeting in the same year, which I did. Everybody was so wonderful and welcoming, which was an amazing thing for me because in that time my mental health wasn’t good and I was a bit afraid about the long trip and all the people I didn’t know yet. But there was not a single bad moment and everyone was so kind, especially Vladena. She took care of me like a mother would, which I am so thankful for!


Vladena and her daughters also invited me to visit them in their home city, Prague, which I did several times in the following years. It became tradition that she would come to Dresden when I hosted another meeting, and I joined some other Czech meetings as well.

From the start, we developed a little fun thing about a Czech drink named Kofola, which I really love! Vladena would always bring at least one bottle to Dresden to make me happy, we would exchange cards from holidays and write a lot of emails. I was updated about the birth and growth of her first grandchild, and shared pictures and events from my life with her, too. It almost felt like she would be an aunt of mine, party of my “real” family, a wise and gentle woman which I could talk to and that would always think about me and send me a card or email that often arrived in times when I really needed something to cheer me up.

In the following years, the Dresden meeting grew bigger and bigger, one year we had more than 70 participants from 4 different countries… Vladena sometimes didn’t have time to join us, but when she did, it was always a true highlight to meet her again in person and just spend some nice hours together. In 2020, we had to cancel the meeting because of the pandemic, which was really sad, and in 2021 I moved away and therefore stopped hosting the meetings. We stayed in contact nonetheless, exchanging emails and cards. Even though it sometimes would take one of us several weeks or even months to respond, it always feels like I just met her a few days before when a new email or card arrived. We are currently trying to meet up again in Prague, I wanted to visit her and her family again for a long time, but life keeps us quite busy. But there is a lot of understanding and I am sure, next year we will make it!

2016 DresdenPCMeeting

This friendship has been truly precious for me and I will try to keep it up and meet her again as often as possible. It is one of the reasons why I love Postcrossing so much, because I learned a lot though her and all the wonderful people I have met in the meetings, especially the Czech ones. It is a special way of bringing people from different nations together who share an interest, which many people nowadays may just smile about, but the Postcrossing community is still strong and so wonderful! For me, attending the meetings, especially in another country, were a big step in overcoming my fears of traveling so far and meeting strangers. Strangers became friends, like Vladena and I did, and I still feel very close to her, even if she is far away – but when a card from her arrives in my mailbox, all that distance doesn’t matter at all."

Thank you Anni and Vladena, for sharing your story with the community! 😊

If you’ve made some good friends through Postcrossing, let us know — we love hearing these stories and sharing them here on the blog, now and then.


30 comments so far

heidiblooms, United States of America

I have met many friends through Postcrossing in person! @peachesandlola and @courtneybblooms are two of my friends that I host Postcrossing meetups with here in Texas often

jjmedusa, United States of America

What a wonderful story! Truly heartwarming. :)

Aguaroble, Lesotho

As always, Postcrossing generate great heartwarming stories...
I made so many great friends thanks to Postcrossing, all over the world... And I feel so grateful!

Cheryll, Suriname

Nice story, wishing you many more meetups together!

I also made great friendships in real life through postcrossing! .....In Austria, Italy, Slovakia.....

lostresviajeros, Austria

Very nice! 💕

Grüsse an die nördlichen Nachbarn! 🤩

richard42, United States of America

i have lots of new friends thru postcrossing especialy Seachange, Becky S, and k Burrell and many others, I now make my own postcards from used stamps, their second life, an will use them for Christmas cards

Verabrady, United States of America

I have yet to make a friend in person with postcrossing, but every card I write and receive feels like friends exchanging greetings. In that way I feel all postcrossers are my friends.
Happy first day of spring (autumn) to you all.

rousita, Mexico

I love this story! And I identify myself with it as I have also made really great friendships through Postcrossing! My friend Anne, @lexx222, and I have traveled together in Mexico and the USA. I have organized Meet Ups with @SamQuito, and now I'm friends with Andrea, @andreabee and Manuela, from Quintana Roo, @MeliClair ... I love Postcrossing!

kaila123, United States of America

I live in a small town in a very out of the way spot so I really love postcrossing because it has brought me so many friends, unfortunately they are all through the mail!! I am happy and jealous to read such a wonderful story

Flippie, Canada

I have made my first connection with another post crosser from Victoria BC. We're meeting for the first time in April . I'm excited.

Thank you for sharing this lovely story.

Pacomole, France

With Postcrossing I have established a connection with a lovely person from Wellington.
It is always a real pleasure to receive her beautiful letters, her kind words and I really enjoy interacting with her.
It's true that the distance between us couldn't be greater, but this friendship brings us closer together. It's like a gift that life gives us; it's for us to carry it through.

sealed4ever, United States of America

Thank you for sharing. Yes we can build many wonderful friendships through Postcrossing. It's a joy in so many ways

Kristi-D, United States of America

Through Postcrossing, I have made friends across the world--we yet haven't met in person, but we may! Another important thing for me is seeing more of local friends. Some were already Postcrossing members, but others joined after I told them about it--and they inspired other friends to join :) . Now we carpool to more distant meetups and a couple friends who live an hour or more away, often join us. We sometimes have morning meetups in various food courts, then have lunch together afterwards, or the meetup may be at a library, and then we head to a restaurant and/or to a stationery store!

AnnJewel_Chyi, China

I have a Japanese friend @naokohotta from postcrossing and we met after 4-year penpaling in 2019 in Nagoya, Japan. Now we still write to each other!

orange_memo, United States of America

I relate to this story as Postcrossing brought a long friendship with one of the kindest persons I ever met, reading this one really felt heartwarming 🙏😊

GoCindy, United States of America

Since 2013, I had a friend named Alex from Kursk. We exchanged many wonderful letters and postcards. However, since the war with Ukraine began, I haven’t heard from him, and I see that he has not logged into Postcrossing.

AnnScot, Germany

I'm so happy to have met @ClareBerlin via Postcrossing. She has become such a dear friend to me!

pamspeidel, United States of America

This was such a heartwarming story! ♥️😊

ybur, Czech Republic

Dear Anni,
thank you for the kind words. Friendship with you is very valuable to me too. I hope that our "free times" can be reconciled soon and we will meet in person. And neither a pandemic nor other inconveniences, nor strikes by German railway workers will make it impossible.:-D

Demmi, Romania

Wonderful Story!
Happy Postcrossing & Happy Friends!

betslets, United States of America

I enjoy reading about Postcrossing connections and I am grateful to have had some longtime (albeit faraway) pen/e-pal friends that originated through Postcrossing and with whom I still correspond. I have "grown" with two of these people, especially, for almost 10 years.
Living where I do, there are miles (and hours) between Postcrossers; however I became acquainted with the delightful Demaris Swint (ezredax) who lived "only about 4 hours" south from me, and was not only instrumental in organizing Meet-ups, but would make sure I received souvenir postcards from the Meet-ups along with personal postcards from World Postcard Days and other events.
Only last year, in March of 2023, was I FINALLY able to attend the Postcrossing Meet-up in Houston (about 3 hours north from me) and visit with Demaris (and about a dozen other Postcrossers) "Live and In Person!" Sadly, Demaris passed away in the Fall of 2023, but has left quite a legacy, which is still being remembered, along with over 8200 official postcard exchanges each - both sent and received respectively.

Tetsuko, Germany

So lovely Postcrossing can create such lovely friendships. I personally met some really beloved frinedships due to Postcrossing. And I'm so happy about it. Last year I could finally visit my long year penpal in Korea. It was such a lovely adventure ♥

thstreit, Switzerland

I love Kofola (taste like a better coke 😉), too!
So if you are in Czech Republic 🇨🇿 or Slovakia 🇸🇰 (home of my wife) you have to try it! Good to know: there‘s a difference between Kofola in a bottle and a Kofola on tap (even better)! So try it in a restaurant or bar where they have it on tap!

Luziaceleste, Brazil

Postcrossing is far more than simple piece of papers and words. There are people and intentions behind every postcard that may cross their lives! Lovely read over those relations,

JustRae, United States of America

What a wonderful thing to have a new friendship created with postcrossing! How fun!

Bret_Prague, Czech Republic

I greet all postcrossers not only from Prague, but from all over the world. I want to write to you that the main post office in Jindřišská Street, Prague 1 (next to Wenceslas Square) still has Czech postage stamps with the theme of Postcrossing by Maria Nogueira from Portugal for sale. You can see it in this article, unfortunately the pdf is only in Czech:
It is far worse that the Czech Post wants to sell this historic and beautiful building. The mail should remain there for a maximum and only 12 months after the sale :(
But I want to end on an optimistic note: Happy Postcrossing.
Bretislav Janik as Bret_Prague :)

LovelySunshine3, United States of America


Misia76, Japan

I love this story! So wonderful, thank you for sharing 😊💕

Grapenat, Germany

Thanks for sharing!!!

-MarianneSF-, Philippines

I have maintained correspondence with at least 4 postcrossers where our mail are now longer letters rather than postcards. Thank you, postcrossing!

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