Sunday, February 20, 2011

Post cards travel memories

I’ve said it before. I am an amateur photographer and take lots of photos. I believe in buying post cards when I travel.

Here are the reasons I buy post cards.

Let’s just say you are on a tour. You’re listening to your guide tell you about what is going past you outside the window. You are snapping photos of everything and people are talking and you are excited. At the end of the day you realize that you know the places you visited and all those interesting little things you saw along the way are saved on your camera. Do you remember them all? Did you write any of that stuff down? I typically don’t either. In a nutshell this is why I buy postcards.

When you travel you get what photos you get. Your photo may be a very good composition of some historic monument during a driving storm or maybe at night. Let’s say you took a photo of the Eifel Tower during the day but your tour didn’t allow you to be there at night. Post card.

Post cards are made under ideal conditions by someone who had the opportunity to be there at the right time. People that take post card photos are also allowed to go into places that tourists aren’t usually allowed.

I was once in Fulda and didn’t have a clue where anything was. I found a kiosk that had a map of Fulda for € 12 and a post card that had the important places by route for € 2. I bought the post card not the map. Now not only was I able to visit the major places in Fulda but I have a nice little story to go along with it too.

Yes, I do have a large collection of post cards. Good memories in those cards go along with the good memories of my photos of the same places. My photos aren’t usually as good as the post cards sometimes they are pretty close, but both are my memories.

The post cards also help me to assemble my photos and put the correct name to my photos. When you are traveling you don’t usually take the time to write down those interesting things you hear. You certainly can’t remember everything the tour guide told you about the places you visited. After a couple of days all those tours start getting jumbled in a tired mind.

You can write stuff on your post cards to help you remember details. You know, I was here on this date with these people, we found this great little place to eat or shop.

That’s why I buy post cards. Then there is the fact that a really good friend advised me to buy post cards on my first trip to Germany as an adult. Every time I buy a post card no matter where in the world I am I think about his advice. It always makes me smile and just a little home sick.

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