Instead, I have decided to focus on the souvenirs which I love for the memories they evoke. I am a sentimental old fool, so whenever I travel, I will usually bring a little memento home with me to remind me of the places I have been, the things I have learned and the people I have met. Most of these items, if small enough, end up in a special box along with a whole pile of letters and postcards from days gone by. Soon this box will be full and I will be forced to have a clear-out, but for now, I feel safe in the knowledge that I have a little space full of memories that I can return to whenever I wish.
My most sentimental souvenirs however, are kept in far more visible places. You can tell a lot about the tat that I like to keep hold of by having a look around my (very messy) desk at work for instance.
On my pin board to the left of me live some notes and cards which remind me of special people, significant moments and important achievements. Those that know me well know that I love a motivational quote, and I am always looking out for new ones on my travels.
To the right of me sits a collection of items that were gifted to me by colleagues following a recent trip to observe the Asian Cup in Australia. A cute koala, a "koozie" (clever Australian invention to hold a bottle, or "stubby" while keeping it cool) which I use as a pencil pot, and a boxing kangaroo pen which has sadly lost its arms due to over-use. A random hotchpotch of items which I have kept because they remind me of why it is that I do what I do every day.
Last but not least, there are my photos. A memory of a special few days in the Peak District in a silver frame, and an image of a life changing trip to Sao Paulo as my screensaver. Photographs are my favourite souvenirs of all, because so many memories and feelings can be evoked by one still image alone.
What are your favourite souvenirs, and why do they mean so much to you?
I am posting this as part of the monthly travel link-up. If you want to join in the conversation about our favourite travel souvenirs, you can pop your post on the link up widget on Emma, Rebecca, Kelly or Jaime's blogs from the 1st June until 7th June.