Souvenirs. The little, tangible token that proves that your trip was real. That it wasn’t just some stress-induced hallucination.
Couples will pull out Christmas ornaments and exclaim in excitement. See, this one was from our trip to Venice. And this one we got on our honeymoon in Greece.
Or a young person’s keys will jingle loudly, weighed down by many a commemorative key chain.
I have no such souvenir collection. I mean, I have souvenirs. One or two (or three) for each place I’ve been. But I’ve never managed to buy the same type of souvenir.
A shiny rock from Australia. A Pinocchio puppet from Italy. A snowman figurine from Santa’s Wonderland…
It doesn’t make for a collection.
But Canada is the exception…
Read on to meet my two Canadian Bear Key Chains.
My Two Canadian Bear Key Chains
The first time I went to Canada, I was still deep in my stuffed animal obsession. So, when I saw this backpack-wearing-stuffed-animal-black-bear keychain I had to have it. My parents granted my wish and this bear happily accompanied me for many years. Many, many years. Middle school, high school, college, and even today.
To put into context just how long I’ve had this bear, let me unveil the contents of its backpack…
If that doesn’t ring a bell, then you were not an elementary schooler in 2010. Let me tell you, they were a big deal. And surprisingly, they were pretty high quality…This picture I took today is proof.
My black bear is even older than the silly bandz. Sentimental value? Through the roof. So, when I saw a white-bear-keychain in my 2019 trip to Canada…well, of course I had to buy it.
Named Gleb, after a “villain” in Anastasia the Musical, the white bear joined the original. If they look a little dirty, it’s because their latest backpack is my field backpack–the backpack I take on my work as an ecological field technician. They’ve traveled across the world with me…Alaska, California, Australia…and I expect they will join me on my 2023 trips to Brazil and South Korea.
Trip by trip, they’ve become souvenirs for more than just Canada. It’s a gift that keeps on giving. And that is why I proclaim stuffed-bear key chains the BEST souvenir collectable.
Do you have a souvenir collection? Drop a comment!
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