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Stubborn Souvenirs

May 17, 2018
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The longest lasting, most stubborn souvenir I got from my long trip from Fiji to Fuji is a newsletter from, an Indonesian booking site. So annoying. Everything, including the small print, is in Bahasa Indonesia. Unsubscribing is not an option.

What is a good souvenir?

Usually not the stubborn ones. Diseases, scars, injuries tend to stick with me sometimes just like the Indonesian newsletter. The other day we reminisced with friends about Hong Kong. I bought a nose spray there. It helped to cure my other stubborn souvenir I acquired while diving in Raja Ampat: an ear infection. I will never forget this nose spray, although I forgot to take a picture: 100% herbal, actually with a yummy aroma, recommended by the lady professionally trained in traditional Chinese medicine. The 20 bucks seemed to be a fortune after months in Southeast Asia, but it was well worth it. It replced the ear infection souvenir with a nice olfactory memory. To anyone going to Hong Kong I would recommend stocking up on herbal remedies for all imaginable diseases – you just can’t get this variety elsewhere and people speak English.

So what is a good souvenir?

What I really wanted to talk about is my Balinese straw hat. I didn’t think it would make it. A burmese mototaxi driver damaged it in an attempt to tie it to my backpack. I almost left it at Angkor Wat. From Thailand to Japan, it received a lot of attention and trade offers. It was a two dollar investment that turned out to be a connector to people, a conversation starter. Only in Northern Laos did I see similarly nice and elaborate ones, but they were not the same, you know. Now it hangs over my bed in Berlin and reminds me of all these moments, people and connections every time I look at it.



What is a good souvenir for you?

One Comment leave one →
  1. Marta permalink
    May 18, 2018 07:21

    Kati, for me there are the same: things, books, pictures, even emails that remind me on people, talks, hugs…just yesterday night I met some wonderful pals I missed the last 50 years…it is so heartwarming to meet up and ejoy mutual life stories…

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