When Josh and I went to Africa, we certainly didn’t go to shop.
In fact, we each only traveled with a day pack….not even a backpack. I wore the same seven articles of clothing for four months straight. So it was a little out of character for us to decide to buy something like this, even though I think we paid about thirty cents for it.
In case it’s not clear from the photo: this is a wooden cooking utensil. We saw women using these as spoons, to stir big pots of stew simmering on the fire; as spatulas, to scrape browned bits from the bottom of a pan; as tongs, to lift small morsels onto a plate; and for seemingly endless other uses.
We’ve used this tool literally thousands of times since we returned from our trip, years ago. Every time we hold it, we think of our travels, and of the food we ate while we were there. We remember the smoky cooking fires, the unique flavors, the unexpected ingredients…actually, they’re more feelings than memories. A visceral response. And it’s all from this utensil.
It’s still in really good shape for its age. Maybe a little splintered on the sides, but we like it that way. We’re pretty sure it’s going to last forever. Or at least until we’re able to return.
Have you ever made a similar purchase while you were traveling? What was it?