A hobby with a point
It's always good to have a hobby - something you're genuinely interested in that takes you away from your chores and daily responsibilities. For me, that hobby is stamp collecting.
Every country has its unique culture and history, and this is reflected in the stamps it issues. In other words, I think collecting stamps is a good way to learn about other countries. What's more, it teaches patience because sometimes it's necessary to wait a long time just for one stamp, and the stamps you've already collected need to be properly looked after, which requires a lot of work.
But don't just focus on 'exotic' foreign stamps. Here in Hong Kong there are special issues of stamps in celebration of big events and festive occasions, such as the Olympic Games and Lunar New Year, and some of them are exquisite.
Some people might say that stamp collecting is a waste of time and money, but I disagree.
Fung Ka-wa, Tsuen Wan Public Ho Chuen Yiu Memorial College
From the Editor
Thank you, Ka-wa, for your charming letter. Stamp collecting is one of those hobbies which has been around a long time. And it doesn't have to be a waste of time and money.
Some stamps are very rare and so they are extremely expensive. Of course, like anything collectable, the fewer there are in the world, the more expensive they become.
If the printer makes a mistake in printing the stamps they become even more valuable, because usually the mistake is corrected. One of the most valuable stamps on the market today is the 'Inverted Jenny', an American stamp from 1918. What makes this stamp so special is that the aircraft in the picture was printed upside down. This stamp is worth hundreds of thousands of US dollars.