At this point I feel that my last few posts have sufficiently hammered home the importance of getting lost while on vacation. This post marks the beginning of a new chapter, but never fear. I’m sure I will still revisit Tip One from time to time.
Welcome to Tip Two: Get Your Own Souvenirs. An important staple of any vacation is finding souvenirs to bring back home and either keeping them for yourself to help you remember all the good times you had or giving them to your family and friends. Whatever you choose to do with your souvenirs, the cost of every little postcard and tacky tourist shirt really adds up, and the memories attached to them are probably little more than the crowded and overpriced shops you bought them from.
Instead, I propose creating your own souvenirs. I don’t mean whipping out the scissors and glue and producing a masterpiece of a craft project, although that would be good fun. I simply mean that some of your best souvenirs may be items that you acquire on your trip, either out of necessity or by accident. Let me explain by giving you an example.
When I went to Venice with my dad for my 16th birthday, it was really rainy. To avoid getting completely drenched, my dad bought one of the umbrellas that the street vendors were selling. The umbrella would work perfectly until the wind would start to blow, and then the umbrella would turn inside out, deeming it useless. This was frustrating but also comical. We used this umbrella for the rest of the week-long trip throughout Italy, and I developed a strange attachment to it.
When it was time to go home, I just couldn’t bring myself to throw it away. To me, it represented a large portion of my trip to Italy. Thinking about that umbrella brings back so many fond memories of that vacation, as silly as that sounds. I still have that useless and deformed umbrella even though it no longer opens without a fight.
My point here is that sometimes the best souvenirs aren’t the ones you intentionally buy as souvenirs. That umbrella is so much more sentimental to me than a touristy magnet or shirt. It is a symbol of my very first trip to Europe and of the special experiences I shared with my dad.