Now that you're back from your trip...

Old Jun 5th, 2000, 01:25 PM
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Now that you're back from your trip...

...what items do you wish you had brought home with you? Maybe you passed up something that you wish you had now. If so, please share it with us. For me, it's Italian olive oil and their wonderful chestnut honey. Wish I had brought back gallons of both.

We are going to London, France (mainly Normandy), Brussels/Bruges, and Germany (mainly the Rhein and Bavaria) for six weeks this summer. What should I bring back?
Old Jun 5th, 2000, 03:45 PM
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Betsy, in Bavaria, if you are near the town of Ettal you MUST buy pewter pins, earrings, and/or some of their beautifully crafted jewerly. Ettal is a small town with an incredible woodcarving and pewter craft tradition. A lot of the town's residents are descendants of the craftsmen that worked in Ludwig's castles and their crafts are unique. I regretted not buying more of their beautifully crafted jewerly and woodcarvings. Ettal is on your way to Oberammergau, which you SHOULD NOT leave without getting at least one Christmas ornament.
Old Jun 5th, 2000, 03:59 PM
Beth Anderson
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Normandy: you must, you must, sample the foods. large samples. do not miss out on the creme brulee! you will not find it anywhere else, like it is there. the cheeses are SOOOO much better than here, too.

bring back Calvados (hard apple cider)

London: check out the music scene. I always try to bring back a lot of music with me (actually wherever I go, but I especially look for unusual stuff in London.) get out and listen to some local music & see if you can find it in the record shops.

in France, again - wines, other portable foods, like homemade jams etc. (fresh stuff is of course harder)

in Bayeux - lace. this was a big lace making area. as was Alencon.

I'll have to think some more on this.

I also buy a lot of books wherever I go (I read French pretty well, and am now studying Italian, and used to be pretty good at German - so this gives me a reason to study too!)

I think buying a lot of postcards is a good idea. If you photos are not up to par, you can show your postcards to friends to show them the places you saw, what you did. a nice addition to a journal too (I always buy a spiral notebook with pockets - easier to keep loose odds & ends)

Old Jun 5th, 2000, 07:33 PM
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i too buy a lot of postcards for myself and paste them in in my photo albums to supplement my own photos. from london i always bring home theater playbills and ticket stubs and include them in the photo album (i get the kind that let you put in either photo pocket sheets or scrapbook sheets). and lest i wear out that theme, i also add other bits of memorabilia to the photo album/scrapbook, like ferry tickets with cool pictures on them or foreign writing/alphabets-=breaks up the photo cavalcade and makes an interesting presentation and each little bit rings an immediate bell every time you open the book.
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 06:10 AM
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If you are in Germany, especially in or around Lubeck, definitely buy some MARZIPAN. It is very good anywhere in Europe, by the way, and I find it hard to get here in Canada. I love marzipan! It was discovered in Lubeck, Germany, so it should be best there. Milka chocolates are also very good, and there is a type of caramel candy that is sooo good and I haven't been able to find it anywhere else. I don't even know what it's called unfortunately. We bought it as an easter egg candy, and it was kind of crystallised and covered with chocolate. Does anyone know what I'm talking about?
I also find it a good idea to buy some clothing in the places you visit. I don't mean a t-shirt with FRANCE writted on it or an Eiffel Tower, but something more unique. My favourite pieces of clothing are: A t-shirt with Australian aboriginal art on it (kangoroos, lizards etc, with that typical technique), a sweatshirt with Native American symbols, and a handwoven bag from Hungary. Everybody complements me on these, how beautiful they are. Oh yes and my Italian shoes!! And my Hungarian shoes!! But remember not to buy everything in sight, only what you know is special to you and that you know will fit into your bag!!
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 07:14 AM
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For me as a bier lover, i wish i had eine mess (a 1 litre size glass beer) from Oktoberfest in Muchen with me. I should pick one from the table before heading home! I assume that Germany would be your last stop so you can choose some nice glasses and pack them well before homebound.
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 07:51 AM
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This is a little different, but it's something that makes me happy: I buy toiletries. I don't just mean fancy soaps, etc., though I love those; I mean supermarket stuff like toothpaste and shampoo, even the same stuff I use at home. First of all, getting beyond the specialty shops and into a supermarket is fun, as you get to see how people shop every day and what there preferences are. Second, you can usually find good chocolate bars dirt cheap. As for the toiletries, the tube of Colgate I bought in Paris didn't really take up space in my suitcase, and now I'm reminded twice a day of my trip.

For things like preserves, I like to get flavors you don't see so much here, like currant, fig, pear. I know someone who's currently on a mad search for pear preserves like those she got in Paris.
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 08:06 AM
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When I was in Germany, I bought a ton of Christmas ornaments as well as several nutcrackers (you know, the ones that look like people - Steinbeck?). I really wish I had bought more. One of them I bought, I have never seen in the US. Every Christmas as I put up my Christmas tree and put up all the ornaments I bought - I relive the trip! In Paris, I bought a purse - I do that from every place I go - and the one I have, they also don't sell in the US. I just got back from Italy, Turkey and Greece - in Italy I did glass sculptures, purses, charms (gold) for my bracelet (actually do that everywhere I go), Turkey I did silk turkish rugs and some gold stuff and in Greece I did some lacework, some gold and some beautiful silk scarves. I also try to buy art from local street artists - Paris is the best place for that. I bought beautiful little watercolors (very small) for about $8.00 a piece that I could Kick myself for not buying more than 2. In Rome, I bought 6 - and I still wish I'd gotten more. They're gorgeous!
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 09:40 AM
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Just a bit of clarification on a posting above... Calvados is a brandy from the apple-country of Normandy. Traditionally an after-dinner sipper. The "cidre" is the hard cider; drink it with a meal - that's what we saw all the truck drivers do (before they got back on the autoroute)!!! Have a great trip.
Old Jun 6th, 2000, 10:33 AM
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I could have written Caitlin's post above. I, too, buy toothpaste, and mustard at the grocery store. "Things" are nice, but they tend to add up. Consumables are fun and when they're gone, it's time to go back. The grocery stores are alway interesting. In Bruge a week or so, I found a very enjoyable French wine at the grocery store (along w/Baguettes and chees) for about US $2.50.

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