The Souvenir Drawer

I have at least one drawer at home that’s filled with travel souvenirs.  There are postcards, maps, museum floor plans, and pamphlets that I’ve brought back from trips.  I always bring more of these things home than I realize, and when I had a quick look recently there were postcards from (among other places) Seattle, Paris, and Brussels stacked together.  I started to review to see if there was anything that could be thrown away.  Since this would be difficult I sorted things by country.  At least that way if there were duplicates I could keep the one in better condition.

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A Frequent Flyer

I make all my reservations with one airline to accumulate frequent flyer miles, and occasionally something unexpected – and exciting –  happens.  This includes finding out the day before a flight that I’ve gotten an upgrade to first class!  When I print out the boarding pass there’s a new seat assignment with a number like 2a or 3b.  Of course this doesn’t happen too often. Normally if I ask the gate agent at the airport about first class seating I hear something like “You’re number 14 on the waiting list.”  Which means there’s no chance of it happening.

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Saving For a Trip

Here’s something I do to save money for trips that started when I brought some coin banks home from a visit to England.  These little banks were originally containers for caramels and shortbread that came in the shapes of double-decker buses and post boxes.  Once the treats were gone, I made a display of them at home.  But then I thought:  why not use them to save money?  I started using one of them to keep the extra coins I’d brought home from England.  I reasoned this would give me some starter money to use on my next trip there.

An opportunity to buy a piggy bank happened when I was in Switzerland.  I saw a really cheerful one and thought I could use it for the Swiss francs I didn’t spend.  At this point I decided to build a collection of banks.  And I might mention that they also make nice souvenirs!

So now I fill them with extra coins I’m saving toward future trips (this includes shopping trips).  It works well for me.

From London to Greenwich

It was a sunny afternoon in August, and the line of people waiting to board was shortest for the boat from Westminster Millennium Pier to Greenwich.  I thought it would be interesting to take a boat ride on the Thames to see London landmarks from a different perspective.  Right away I could see the London Eye (a large Ferris wheel), and it was imposing from the water.  If you watched it closely, you could see it moving very slowly.

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