As you may remember, I have reviewed “Family On The Loose” a while ago, but when I found out that we’re going to discuss it in the book club, I was so excited. And today is my turn to write about it!
Here are other posts discussing chapter 1-7, and I will write about chapter 8.
Chapter 8, “Making Memories Stick” is unique because with every other travel book, the journey ends when you come back home. In “Family On The Loose”, however, the time after the trip is a very special part of the journey.
In the chapter, Ashley and Bill give us useful advice how to make the best out of the trip after it has ended.
1) Prepare for reentry shock
Just as rewerse culture shock, things we took for granted in our country can suddenly seem silly. Additionally, going back home is a little like buying a whole new house: you need to stock up on groceries, there are loads and loads of laundry to manage. Children and parents can get grumpy, and after an exciting and fascinating trip, they can feel that their lives are dull and boring.
- to plan something really cool shortly after you come back- for example dinner with friends, a photo viewing where you show pictures and souvenirs from the trip.
- to tackle chores first thing- chores are annoying but what is even more annoying is when they multiply. So tackle them when you come home.
- to plan in a few empty days to get sleep, manage the houshold, and get the much needed rest.
- to wait until you have managed all the chores and some days of ralaxation before you invite family or friends over
- Start planning the next trip.
This is great advice and I am sure it will be useful to everyone.
2) Make memories a priority
I haven’t really thought of making memories a priority but I think it’s important because it helps remember and learn better and additionally, you have very cool albums or diaries with photos you can then brag about to everyone. With technology, there is a lot you can do- and making online photo albums is really easy!
As for souvenirs, you can have a special shelf in your home- just for that very purpose! Take your time unwrapping and arranging them!
3) Read, write and watch
Ashley and Bill suggest to keep reading and writing. During your travels, you have maybe kept a diary or travel journal. You can continue doing that after you came home, or maybe write a fiction book based on the country or city you have just visited. Or, you can continue journalling your feelings and observations when back home- also a great idea to battle reentry shock! Another idea Ashle and Billy have is to write a local travel guide. After the trip, you have been away, came back and seen your town with fresh eyes. I think it is brilliant, because you have lived there your whole life and know the place intimately but at the same time, you also have an outsider’s perspective, which makes you the perfect person to write a travel guide!
As for book readings, how about books that are set in the country you have just visited? The cool thing is that you can choose between fiction, stories, novels, documentaries, films set on location- they’re all a great idea! If you have read these books, try reading them again- you will understand much much more!
4) Foster pen pals
I have never thought about pen pals- am not a letter writing person- but maybe some people enjoy it. Snail mail will work for some people, while email, Skype, and other technological means can be easier and faster for others. You can also create photo books from back home and send them to your friends abroad- how cool is that?
5) Engage Your Kids’ Friends
You can invite your children’s friends over to share a meal, some candy and tell stories from your trip. How about taking it to school and bdinring souvenirs for a show and tell, or do a little presentation on the country where you’ve been? Or, if you’re up for it, you can make a destination party. With decorations, meals, photos and- especially- a map.
6) Reach out to foreigners
This is agreat idea- to reach out to people from (but not only from) the destination you have just visited. Go tocelebrations, cultural centres, restaurants, film viewings, or you can make a donation to a refugeee centre. Or, take a language class! The possibilities are endless.
Chapter 9- discussed on Kid World Citizen- deals with finding the world in your backyard- how to incorporate the experiences you have collected on your journey into your every day lives, and we will end the discussion of “Family On The Loose” by a Q&A with the authors on Chasing The Donkey!