Friday was the last day of work for me at a company based in The Hague, South Holland. Upon saying my goodbyes I was completely bowled over by the many beautiful and thoughtful gifts I received. One gift in particular stood out. This gift, a travel diary, if you will, is the most thoughtful, creative present ever. My colleague and friend, Alena, who gave me this gem, is a ‘scrapbooker’ but this is a word that certainly does no justice to this very pretty form of arts and crafts.
From the very onset the travel diary blew me away. The cover is just so magnificent, arranged with lovely pink flowers on a printed floral background and bound with a ribbon. Silver butterflies, clocks and little satin ribbons are equally present.
The first pages inside display a world map with tiny gold beads indicating the places where I’ve travelled to over the last year and a bit. The page to the right of this shows a cut-out photograph of me in a hot air balloon with more detailed and pretty elevated cut-outs in the shape of a flower bouquet, complete with ribbons and a tiny pearl gift tag.
Over the page you’ll find evidence of the places I’ve visited, starting with The Netherlands. A photo of me in a rather large oversized clog has been used, together with scrapbooking designs and well-known symbols of The Netherlands – bicycles, windmills and the Dutch flag.
Alena then included a photograph of me in Sri Lanka at Sigiriya ‘Mountain’, along with photos of tea plantations and appropriate butterfly designs.
Next, the journey continues in Spain, at the Montserrat monastery near Barcelona. The lovely scrapbooking designs change and this time you see the washing on the line (very appropriate for Spain!) – washing that is actually made from pink ribbon and is soft to touch!
Kites, butterflies and flowers follow together with my favourite crazy photograph, shot on board a cruise liner in 2013.
Monaco and Italy are next, with Italy as a kind of metaphoric ‘gift’ – a ribbon you have to open. Inside the ‘gift’ there are some lovely photos of Rome and of my family.
The second last page demonstrates the vibrancy of Brugge in Belgium, with its lovely little colourful houses and quaint town squares.
On the final page, images of Newcastle upon Tyne (my most recent trip) have been used. A note is also included at the end and says, “To be continued” (by me of course!).
I am extremely thankful for this amazing gift. It is something I will treasure forever and always. It gives me a chance to document my travels and record my experiences for future generations. I don’t think there could ever be a more magnificent gift for a travel blogger and creative such as myself. Thank you Alena. Words cannot describe.