The Search for Souvenirs

Part of the fun of travel is bringing back souvenirs that have memories of where and when they were purchased.  I have lots of postcards and refrigerator magnets but some of my favorite souvenirs are things I can look at such as art prints and calendars.  I also like things I can wear like scarves and bracelets.  When I was in Italy I wanted to find some unique souvenirs, but where should I start?  Wherever I went there were so many choices it was difficult to decide.  As I looked around I saw possibilities like these:

It’s a good idea to stop for some refreshments along the way.


But instead of fruit I decided to stop for a gelato and this photograph is a great souvenir!


A Walk in the Cinque Terre

When I got off the local train that stopped at the villages of the Cinque Terre I carried a copy of the train schedule.  That way I’d know when to be back at the station to go to the next stop.  Once I knew how much time I had for my walk I decided to take in all the charming sights I could.  It had rained earlier so I had a slightly soggy umbrellas in my bag.  Although there were lots of visitors that day I managed to get away from the crowd and enjoy my walk.  These are some of my impressions.

It’s a good idea is to have boats available…

Cinque Terre

And wherever you are, there is the sight of water:

Cinque Terre


Check out Jo’s Monday walk here.

A Carousel and Other Souvenirs

When I was in Arles, France this spring I wanted to take a look around.  Following a sign seemed like a good way to begin.


The buildings were colorful and there were interesting places to shop.



Then I discovered a carousel and decided to take some pictures as souvenirs.  Although it wasn’t open at the time I thought that the cars (including the animals) were charming.

Here is the entire carousel and a detail of one of the panels that features the amphitheater.



These pictures are now my souvenir postcards from Arles.

Necessary Shopping in Florence

A visit to Florence should include shopping, from window shopping on the Ponte Vecchio to actual buying at places like the San Lorenzo market.  A good place to begin is with the Ponte Vecchio itself, which is impressive from either side of the Arno.


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Passing the Time at the Airport

Many of my trips involve travel by airplane, and sometimes I have connecting flights.  This leads to quite a bit of time spent in airport terminals.  I know I should just go the gate and find a place to sit.  But here’s what actually happens.

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An Unnecessary Souvenir

At the time it seems to be the best souvenir ever.  But when you get home, you look at it and wonder what you were thinking when you (I should say “I”) had to have that clock with a picture of Stonehenge on it.  It happened after I saw Stonehenge for the first time.  I had taken an excessive number of pictures of it.  So naturally I went to the gift shop looking for something “unique” to take home.   I think I found it when I bought the clock.

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Shopping While Sightseeing

It was a group walking tour in a seaside town in Brittany, France.  I had reviewed my French before taking this trip, although I felt that I had a good foundation for the language.  After all, I started taking French classes at school when I was eight years old!  During the tour we learned about the history of the city as we headed toward the local cathedral for more sightseeing.  But as we walked, we passed a street that had something like five shoe stores with intriguing display windows.  There were boots, walking shoes, and sandals, both traditional and trendy.  So now I had a choice to make:  should I visit the cathedral and continue with the walking tour, or stop into the shoe stores I had just passed?  So let’s look at the choices again:  sightseeing or shopping, sightseeing or new shoes…   Was there really a doubt about this?

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