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74 replies
MeredithBlueEyes
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One of the best things I brought with me last summer was a gluestick. I used it to put maps, coasters, ticket stubs, etc. into my journal as I went. It made my journal really interesting and colorful. I know if I tried to keep all that stuff in my backpack or mail it home I would never get around to making a scrapbook.

prako
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This is one of the BEST topics that I have read on Eurotrip forums. Keep it up guys.

kandyman78
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I am leaving in a month (June 18) and hadn’t really thought about bringing a journal. I had heard of people who did, but I’m really just a photo guy. However, all of you talking about it and reliving your memories has shown me the importance of it. Thank you.

dweedz
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If you can’t see yourself carrying a journal around with you, just write an e-mail (to your mom, a friend, etc.) detailing what you did every couple of days or so. Then get them to keep the emails for you. It’s really easy and quick, and when you get home you’ll have your own little journal waiting for you. I reccommend documenting your trip in some way, as that will become your most treasured souvenier. Trust me, you do forget about things! And if you’re anything like me, alot of things!!!

Stevie
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Kahunna –

Your journals are awesome! And your page was really helpful for journal tips. I was worried about mine being really boring bc I am not very good at writing creatively but the ideas about stamps and drawing were great and gave your journals so much personality – I’ll be stealing those ideas! Did you use sticky tape or glue for the flowers, tickets etc? I’ve started writing in mine just with my itinerary, friends address, travel quotes etc – I’m such a planner and a list writer but suck at journal writing!

hope
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hey stevie, check out this book called Brave on the Rocks by Sabrina Ward Harrison. It’s basically her journal/art book during her trip to Italy. It’s awesome!!!!! She also has another book called Spilling Open: The Art of Becoming Yourself. If you’re looking for inspiration for journaling, she definitely has it! I’ve kept a journal for 12 years and have def. been inspired since looking through these books. If you can’t look at it before you leave, at least pop into a US bookstore to browse thru – worth it!

here’s the amazon link: http://www.amazon.co…

Kahunna
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quote:
Kahunna –

Your journals are awesome! And your page was really helpful for journal tips. I was worried about mine being really boring bc I am not very good at writing creatively but the ideas about stamps and drawing were great and gave your journals so much personality – I’ll be stealing those ideas! Did you use sticky tape or glue for the flowers, tickets etc? I’ve started writing in mine just with my itinerary, friends address, travel quotes etc – I’m such a planner and a list writer but suck at journal writing!

Hey Stevie,

Thanks! I’m not a big journal keeper neither, so I’m fascinated with the fact that I wrote close to 400 pages of small text on my 77-day trip. I am just about done scanning all three of my journals so I can access them more easily. For the flowers and junk, I taped them into the pages when I had the chance. I think I bought a small roll of clear tape to use while I travelled but I know that during the beginning, I had to ask businesses and friends for a small strip so I could tape in all the loose stuff. Some hostels lent me a roll for a bit.

Hope is the one you want to talk to about diligent journal keeping, but I think the key reason to why I kept a detailed journal is because I was traveling alone. Without realizing it at the time, my journal became something to talk to about my trip. I recall a few days during my trip where I didn’t say more than a few words to others, so I would share my trip as it happened in the pages of my journal. It might sound a little strange, but it worked for me.

carla
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Helpful information. Bump.

Kahunna
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Wow – this is an old thread. But I agree – it has some good info. If anyone is wanting a place to host their web journals while they are traveling, let me know. I’ve added a new (free) section to[url=‘http://www.kahunna.net/pilgrims_progress/main.shtml’]my site[/url].

CajunWhacko
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I spent 4 months studying in Santiago, Chile a few years ago, and I took a black, hardback sketch book for my journal. To personalize it, I got pictures of friends, family, home, my cats, etc and taped them to the front cover in a collage. Then I got some clear contact paper and covered them all to waterproof it. That way I had pictures from home to show people, and for when I was homesick, and it didn’t take up any extra room, nor did I have to worry about losing my pictures. I wrote all my addresses down in the back cover, along with conversion tables, etc. Starting in the back I taped in bus tickets, receipts, etc. I have some sketches that I did, and I even have some sketches other people I ran into did.
I’m going to Germany for 9 months soon, and (I think) I’m taking a composition book to use for my journal. I’m going to do the same thing with the pictures on the covers of it. I’m not sure how well it’ll hold up compared to the sketchbook, but I guess I’ll find out. It’s always fun to pull out my journal and show it to people and read through it. Makes me homesick though!

CW

FernDakin
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quote:
Wow – this is an old thread. But I agree – it has some good info. If anyone is wanting a place to host their web journals while they are traveling, let me know. I’ve added a new (free) section to[url=‘http://www.kahunna.net/pilgrims_progress/main.shtml’]my site[/url].

HI KAHUNNA ! YOUR SITE IS GREAT!

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Back to the top again.
Thanks for all of your input!
Happy Travels

The Herr
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The Herr has found it easier keeping a travel journal while traveling solo. He has tried keeping a journal traveling with a group of friends and found it much more difficult because of all the distractions that come with being in a group.

Anyone else experience the same???

I am leaving from Chicago, IL with $2000 for 17 days
Paris, Nice, Arles, Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Madrid
Judith
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Recently here in California we had some terrible wildfires and it made me think, what would be important enough to grab if I only had 20mins to get out of my house. My journals of two trips to Europe were right up there with pictures and videos of my family and friends. They aren’t by any stretch of the imagination just "travel logs" They are volumes of insight and wisdom that comes as a wonderful side effect of traveling alone. When I re read them, I am not only right back in Europe, but amazed at what incredible thoughts and feelings surface while traveling. I would miss the knowledge they bring to me each time I re read them had they not been written. Take the time, keep them safe and realize that you won’t be 20 or 30 forever. It’s quite a lesson to look back and see how far you’ve come.My journals and pictures are the only things I would hate to lose on the journey.

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What a load of old piddle !

I’m too busy planning new adventures and enjoying myself to write a crappy journal never mind going back and rereading it….

all I can say if you re-read this crap then you’re leading a very sad existence!

If you need to capture all that shite in a book instead of your head then I’d lay off the drugs and glue

Kahunna
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Jboy, it can’t be denied that you have creative ways to bump up an old thread. LOL

I think I’ll bring a few[url=‘http://www.cortina.nl/catalogus/moleskine.htm’]Moleskine journals[/url] with me this time ‘round. Although I’ll keep the option open to use one I find in Europe. Paris and (supposedly) London have some great journals in their art shops.

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starpiste
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I was just reading through all the journal tips and had a few to add.
I am currently living in England studying for the year and will be travelling while I am here. Right now I keep my journal strictly online because I have net access in my room, but I will do it on paper when I’m travelling without my laptop. I find I don’t journal everyday if I don’t have time, maybe only every two or three days. Sometimes if I’m waiting for a bus I’ll pull out a journal and jot some notes down, or alone at a cafe or chilling in a park.

Also, someone who said they stopped Journaling a bit when they were coming home and 3 or 4 am. I find when I write then, in the haze of fun and drink, I get some of my best and funniest stuff to look back on. I love coming home smashed and writing my immediate feelings in the dark. Not always coherent but always funny.

About carrying around transit stubs, I only keep the first one of each type. Like I won’t keep every Paris metro stub becasue they look the same, I’ll just keep my first one.

Also if you are into shopping or window shopping while travelling (and yes you can do this and still enjoy the culture of a country and stay on a budget) take business cards from shops and keep a few shopping bags if they are interesting. Usually the plastic ones fold up really small and you can put stuff in them while travelling.

That’s it from me. I think that last tip might make me look like a total nut.

monkeywarplane
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I brought a journal on my monthlong Eurotrip and used it as a virtual everything… scrapbook for tickets, hand-drawn maps, notes, directions, museum hours, addresses, as well as my thoughts and observations… it is on par with my camera… I could have been happy to come home with just my camera and my journal…

I started mine in June and still have the same journal that I am using now as a quasi-planner, post-it, scrap/notebook, calendar, journal.. it’s great.

For me, it was important to have a little folder, a rubber-band strap to keep it closed and for it be sturdy. I must say I was lucky to have picked out a great one my first time… its the moleskine-

http://www.mojolondo…

I got mine at Barnes and Nobles for about $15 USD I’ve sinced tried to find something comparable so as when I start stacking these up, I can decipher them from one another. I guess thats the only downfall, is that the size moleskine notebook that I have (9×14cm) only comes in BLACK.

I just wished I had thought of this before… I can see myself using these forever…

Stuart

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Another thing is… people are different, some people won’t use it more than to use it as a post-it note to write down phone numbers or other disposable memories. As for me, someone who forgets things quite easily (even some very memorable ones), it’s certainly a must-have

Stuart

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I always travel with a little miniature notebook to track expenses, important phone numbers, jot down things I need to remember, etc. I keep that handy at all times.

That’s different than my journal, which is very personal and I don’t publish anywhere. The journal is where I write down my thoughts, observations, reactions and introspections on things I’ve seen, done, and people I’ve met. I have reread my journals since travelling and I find they help bring back all sorts of memories. I couldn’t imagine travelling for any length of time without one.

But then, I love to write. Some people draw or sketch. Some take lots of photos (well, I do that too but those are to share with others). But the writing is for me and me alone.

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Just a quick tip from a semi-unexperienced traveler (went on a couple of educational tours of europe in high school and leave in two weeks to study abroad). I LOVE the little 3"x4" or so notebooks that come in a five pack for around one dollar. They are a perfect fit in my passport pack that i wear under my shirt. I keep a pen and that notebook on me (like my passport) and take the opportunity to write in it if i’m on a bus or a train or waiting around for my friends to shop. In the back of the notebook i would do a very rough (very unartistic) sketch of the things that i take pictures of. I also found that i could keep one in my camera bag just for this purpose. When i got back to the states i filled two of these small notebooks, but had a very acurate ways to sort through my pics and my memories. Just a thought!!

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I’m totally lost without a journal and a glue stick. No, really, i am.