WHAT DO YOU COLLECT WHEN YOU TRAVEL?
In the summer of 1998 I was gifted a sarong by the mother of a host family I was staying with in Fiji during a singing trip. I will never throw it away! Ever. In the years surrounding college I didn’t travel much, but over the past decade I've made it a point to go searching for this item on every trip. My favorite one size fits all accessory adds personal style as a cover up and transforms into a dress for a casual beachside lunch. When I travel somewhere warm I pack one with me knowing I’ll bring home another from a street market or vendor. At home they are kept next to my swimsuits in two basket drawers where they rest eternally wrinkled. I currently have about 10 in my little collection and here are some of my favorites and where they were purchased.
STREET MARKET MAGIC
There are 3 things you need to shop in the street, besides cash. Sunglasses, a cold beverage and a poker face are the essentials. Sunglasses help you ignore the vulture stares as many owners would love for you to overspend on their merchandise. The atmosphere feels one intensity level higher than walking through perfume sprayers at the department store. It's nice to go incognito for this reason. A cold beverage is self explanatory - you should always have a cold beverage in hand while on vacation. Your poker face is to keep you focused on what you came for and avoid getting ripped off. In most markets you do not need to pay the asking price. Consider the quality of the item and how much you want to pay. In a world of tourism marketing, the street market is one magical place where you determine the value of an item and the experience itself is free! Have fun out there with whatever you collect.