While travel plans are on hold due to Covid-19, I’ve found joy by globe-trotting the world with my travel mementos. The framed pictures, postcards, and posters that line my walls in my home allow me to savor memories of the countries I have visited during my life after 50 and the good times I have had with family and friends when I was able to journey abroad.
Bring me back to Barcelona, Positano and Monte Carlo
Every morning I wake up to a framed Picasso print from my visit to Museu Picasso in Barcelona. It was a girls’ trip to Barcelona in 2014 with my sister N and daughter A. We bought tickets in advance and still had to wait on a long line to enter the museum. It was well worth the wait and I definitely want to go back to Barcelona — there are many more museums to see and tapas to eat.
Near the windows in my bedroom are two watercolors of Positano – one of my favorite places in Italy. There were six of us traveling when we went to Positano in the summer of 2016. We rented a villa high up on the hill with magnificent views. When I look at these pictures I blink and bring myself back to the crisp, clear aquamarine waters of Positano and the Amalfi coast. Oh come voglio tornare a Positano.
A Can-Can poster from Monte Carlo that covers the wall above my bathtub makes me smile whenever I enter my master bath. The colors are vibrant and light up the room. Monte Carlo was a highlight during my retirement celebration trip seven years ago with my daughter A and son D. The itinerary included stays in Paris, Provence and Nice. It was easy to take a train ride from Nice to Monte Carlo and Monaco for a day.
When I relax in my sunken tub I close my eyes and pretend I’m cruising the Mediterranean on one of those huge yachts. Ooh, ooh, ooh, Monte Carlo s’il te plait, reprends moi.
Let’s go to Santorini again and visit Colmar too
My upstairs hall bathroom is filled with scenes of Santorini, one of the most picturesque islands in Greece. It was during this second girls’ trip in summer 2017 with my sister N and daughter A, where I hunted for a trio of postcards to capture the breathtaking scenery of the Greek Isles. Michaels custom framing did a great job turning my tiny postcards into a beautiful work of art.
Michaels did the same for my Hansi poster of happy villages of the Alsace which hangs above the bathroom towel rack. I purchased the poster at the Hansi Museum during an excursion to Colmar, France, when my boyfriend L and I voyaged on the Viking Rhineland Discovery River Cruise in September 2016. The village was charming with cobblestone streets and handmade shop signs produced by Colmar artist Hansi.
Remembering more landmarks in Spain
Sweet dreams of Spain surround my daughter A’s room when she visits. That’s because above her bed is a dramatic drawing of the famous Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi’s Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. It is the most incredible church you will ever experience and a “must-see” landmark in Barcelona. Be sure to reserve your tickets online before you go otherwise you’ll be waiting for hours and regret not getting inside by nightfall.
The church is still under construction and scheduled to be completed in 2026 for the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death. (I hope Covid-19 will be gone by then and we can travel again. I think I may need to schedule another visit to Barcelona with my senioritas N and A. Si, si, si!)
Keeping with the Spanish theme, I added a fabulous flamenco dancer to A’s room. I bought the watercolor while on an excursion to Salamanca, during my first-ever cruise in 2015 with my boyfriend L on Viking River Cruises “Portugal’s River of Gold.” There are more souvenirs from this trip in my kitchen and living room as well.
Are you exhausted from traveling yet?
Maybe we should take a break from all this globe-trotting. I think I’ll save my first floor mementos for another post. Then we can travel again to different places next week – Paris, Rome, Florence, Bergen, Lapland and more. It will be fun and you won’t even have to get on a plane.
Meantime, leave a comment and share your favorite mementos from your travels.
I love your very tasteful travel art! What wonderful memories~!!
Wonderful post, Judi! I love the idea of framing postcards in a series like you\’ve done. I, too, always look for some kind of local art when I travel. As we\’re seeing during this time of isolation, those mementoes really do help keep the travel memories alive.
Doreen, postcards are an inexpensive way to collect local art. Although sometimes it’s challenging to find just the right card with an illustration not a photograph.
You’ve done a lovely job of incorporating your travel mementos into your everyday life. Just yesterday I came across a print of a castle I visited long ago that I never got around to framing. You’re inspiring me to get on with it already!
Carole, I also have art from my travels that I haven’t framed yet. Sometimes I wait until I decide exactly where I plan to hang it in my house.