I also collect incoming mail into North Borneo. Some of them have interesting journeys before arriving at their final destination like this card here.
This card was initially sent from Zwolle railway station which is a major transportation hub for north Netherlands. It is under an hour and a half from Amsterdam by train. The card was sent in October 1930 by airmail through the KLM Amsterdam-Batavia service which was started in the previous year in September. It was initially sent to the Dutch Indies to a person who had already left town as a radio operator on the ship SS Tjipanas on its way to Japan. The SS Tjipanas served the Java China Japan Packet Line which was also known as the KJPCL. The card arrived at Weltevreden on 10 November 1930 and then Tanjong Priok, also near Batavia, the next day in the Dutch Indies. It was then diverted to Kobe arriving on 27 February 1931 but the ship Tjipanas had already left for Java.
From Kobe, it went to Hong Kong but was not back stamped and caught the SS Mausang bound for Sandakan. The Mausang arrived at Sandakan on 14 March 1931 according to the BNB Herald. There is a double ring Sandakan cds with a date of 17 MAR 1931 as seen on the second illustration. The SS Tjipanas then came to Sandakan from Samarinda in east Kalimantan on the 20 March 1931 on its way to Japan via Hong Kong and Shanghai. The letter was duly delivered to Mr Geytenbeek courtesy of Harrisons and Crosfield in Sandakan who were presumably the shipping agent.
A long message in Dutch on the back with difficult to read slanty old fashion script. If a reader can translate, it would be much appreciated.
This interesting lot came with an old magazine photo and also a photo of the ship model in some museum in Holland. There is a brief write up in Dutch but much of what is written above is from my own research. There were two ships named Tjipanas. This particular ship was built in Amsterdam in 1903 and was sold and scrapped in 1932.