When a great vacation ends, you are often only left with pictures and memories. But even looking at pictures doesn’t really give you the feeling you had when the picture was taken- rather its kind of like looking at somebody elses life. You remember the fun times you had, but you don’t feel them. Well, here is something very simple you can do to experience the feelings you had while on vacation any time you want to.
Find a small snack or candy that you’ve never tasted before. Take it with you on your trip, and eat it multiple times each day. The first time I did this was with my dad on a ski trip in Colorado, and I didn’t do it on purpose. I had bought a few packs of lemon Altoids, and I would take them out of my pocket constantly and share them with my dad- I ate them on the plane, in the hotel, in the car, in the chairlift, and on the slopes. I went through a few small canisters. My dad and I also had our first Nature Valley bars, which they were handing out for free on the mountain. So we also ate those with lunch each day.
When we went home, I was out of Altoids and didn’t eat them again for awhile. When I finally bought another pack and popped one in my mouth, there was an immediate rush of thoughts and emotions that made me feel like I was back in Colorado skiing. And it happened every time I ate a lemon Altoid after that. Unfortunately Altoids discontinued their lemon flavor a few years ago. But more than any pictures, sounds, or souvenirs, a memory based on taste was able to produce a very strong feeling of being back on that trip; the same goes for Nature Valley bars.
And this wasn’t a one-time thing. It has worked consistently for me- in Germany I drank a lot of peppermint tea, and drinking it now helps me bring back the feeling of being in Germany perfectly. Corn on the cob makes me feel like I am sitting in the sun by the barbecue at my family’s beach house.
So the next time you go on vacation, bring a snack you can eat a few times a day without being unhealthy. Some ideas might be a new brand and flavor gum, cream savers, a different kind of cheese, nuts, or fruit leather. When you come back from vacation and it seems like a distant memory, bring it right back full force through a memory made by flavor. Good luck!