Travel Journals

Posted on May 3, 2013. Filed under: France, Italy, Paris, Rome, Switzerland, Tour du Mont Blanc, Travel | Tags: , , , , , |

Travel - Journals

I have 3 travel journals now.  The first one I kept in 2009 for our trip to Florence, Siena, Lucca, Pisa, and the Cinque Terre.  The second was Paris in 2010.  This last one was to document our hike on the Tour du Mont Blanc in 2012.  Trips move along pretty fast.  I find writing for even a few minutes each evening before sleep caps off the day for me.  It lets my mind go because the little booklet has the details recorded.

I’ve gotten more sophisticated in my travel journaling.  Back in 2009 I mostly recorded just a list of what we did each day.  For example, my second day entry reads, “Academia-David, San Marco (Monastery)-Fra Angelico frescoes, Duomo climb! and Duomo Museum.  Even this trip, though, I started to get more involved in the tiny details.  The beginning of my last day entry for our trip home:  “Up early, breakfast in little bags on chair outside our door – Luca takes good care of us.  Walk to bus station (right next to train station).  Quiet, sunny morning.  Stopped briefly to take one breath and one last look @ Duomo and our home piazza.  Bought bus ticket – on to bus after just a 10 min. wait – perfetto!”

In Paris I wrote many, many pages each day with all the sensual delights of the city recorded that I could remember.  “…So, then a little walking, we split a small salmon quiche on the street and a lovely almond-filled croissant.  Also bought chocolàt cake and a jelly-filled bengiet (for Billy) for dessert tonight.  We took the 95 bus home – but VERY crowded and now tea and lovely little mandarin oranges from Spain with the leaves still on!  …the plan is to have our dinner and then head out to see if we can get into the special Monet exhibit at the Grand Palais.”  (I will have to tell you the rest of THAT story soon!)

By the time I started my third journal last September on our hiking trip I was completely ready.  I had my little composition book and pens.  I started in the airport as we were delayed in Canada.  I finished in the air over the Atlantic Ocean.  This book includes our daily experiences and I even branched out into poetry!  This was quite a hoot to read aloud to our dinner companions!  Here is one of my creations:

Mont Blanc Tour

Sunrise on mountains

Rushing waters flow

Step lively up and down

Listen to the cows

their bells musical

Vast space

out and around

New friends right here

Wine and cheese

Laughter to cheer

Sleep deeply

A really great thing to do in a travel journal is to make a list of future dos/don’ts.  I usually put these kinds of nuts and bolts notes at the back.  So I have packing suggestions, and other notes like these from Paris, “An apartment was a great idea.  We saved boo-koo bucks having a kitchen.  Also, really felt very much like we lived here these 2 weeks!” and “Yes, bring ipod, but consider a small speaker to have tunes in the apartment at night.”

Next time?  It will be a bit bigger and include both words and pictures!  I can’t wait to try little sketches.  The hard part is saving a little time and energy to compose something each day.  It is a little bit of a job, but the memories these rekindle when I look at them are well worth it.

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