How do you guys feel about souvenirs? As a kid I LOVED souvenirs. But as an adult, and as I travel more, I definitely suffer from some souvenir fatigue. I love having something to remind me of my travels, but I want it to be functional in some way. One thing I love to collect is small art pieces – but recently I found most art to be excessively derivative and over-priced. Additionally, I usually have very little time to shop when traveling for work, so hunting for that special gem and then spending 45 minutes negotiating about the price isn’t really possible.
On my recent Kenyan adventure I managed to pick up a few things that I love and that I think will be around for a long time.
These ornaments were comparatively grossly over-priced, but given their uniqueness I just had to have them. I chose to buy an elephant and a giraffe as I had spent the morning at the elephant orphanage and the giraffe sanctuary. Plus, how hilarious are these?!?
I did squeeze in a visit to one store. I could tell that their prices were a little, shall we say ‘geared to those spending dollars’ but I found a piece that I love and negotiated a reasonable price. It’s a Lourie carved out of wood. These birds hold a special place in my heart – and bring me right back to the many weeks spent at my grandparents’ house as a small child. I think this is a gorgeous piece of craftsmanship and it’s already living in my glass corner cabinet in the dining room.
The final shopping happened at the airport. When I got to my gate, I still had a small amount of Kenyan Shillings left. Already having a drawer full of foreign currency, and having no desire to add more, I decided to see how much I could spend at the curio shop next to my gate. I fully expected to only be able to afford perhaps a key chain or a magnet, but then I spotted these adorable colored soapstone hippos. I could afford exactly two (no change to spare) and so I elbowed my way through the other tourists doing some last minute shopping and picked up these two guys.
How cute are they? I love their over-sized noses & that they have a little pattern going. Penelope is convinced that they are dog toys, and cries for them every time she sees them. We decided to play it safe & these two also live behind the safety of the glass curio cabinet’s door.