Received in late July 2013 via Postcrossing official swap. :) Thanks Kate!
Painted view of Ponte Vecchio, Firenze (Florence), Italy. ^^
Colourful US stamps:
Cute Aloha stamps!
Aloha in the Hawaiian language means affection, peace, compassion and mercy. Since the middle of the 19th century, it also has come to be used as an English greeting to say goodbye and hello. “Aloha” is also included in the state nickname of Hawaii, the “Aloha State”.
The word aloha derives from the Proto-Polynesian root *qarofa, and ultimately from Proto-Polynesian. It has cognates in other Polynesian languages, such as Samoan alofa and Māori aroha, also meaning “love”.
The use of the word as a greeting has been reconstructed to Proto-Polynesian. Before contact with the West, other words used for greeting included welina and anoai. Today, “aloha kakahiaka” is the phrase for “good morning.” “Aloha ʻauinalā” means “good afternoon” and “aloha ahiahi” means “good evening.” “Aloha kākou” is a common form of “welcome/goodbye to all.”
In modern Hawaiʻi, numerous businesses have aloha in their names, with more than 3 pages of listings in the Oʻahu phone book alone.