It invariably happens every time I pack for a trip, prepare for an adventure, or find myself somewhere other than home… A song (or songs) gets in my head and is from that moment on indelibly linked to where I am traveling and, subsequently, memories from that trip.
Case in point, Tim McGraw’s Refried Dreams and Pam Tillis’ Mi Vida Loca (My Crazy Life) were understandable signposts for a 1995 trip to Cancun, with both Mexican food and some Spanish on the docket. As you’ve guessed, neither one was on an iPod back then, but rather a cassette tape… Doesn’t make the memory or connection to that trip any less strong!
On the flip side, a 1998 vacation that found me in Paris gifted me with a continuously looped version of Ricky Martin’s La Copa de La Vida/The Cup Of Life stuck in my head courtesy of the World Cup being held while we were there. No iPod that time either, but still a very vivid memory.
Sometimes the music still shows up, even when there was no plan or immediate reason as to why… At a dance club in Florence we found the crowds crazy about singing karaoke – to the music from Grease! Chalk up a badly performed Hopelessly Devoted To You into the annals from Italy. (Now this particular memory I would happily cleanse from my mind, but I have to say it was fascinating that a 20+ year old movie had spawned such a competitive spirit among those participating.)
Though the above examples are from personal travel, now and again it happens with business travel as well. This week, for instance, I just traveled for business to New York City. I love everything about visiting there – the pace, the food, the architecture. The song that kept me company this time was The Wanted’s I’m Glad You Came. I could probably blame that on the catchy tune or some pre-Olympics coverage of gymnastics or track and field, but I just plain love the song and am not sorry it connects me to New York!
Even though I have not yet been able to figure out how to physically capture songs in my scrapbook (a list, lyrics written across the page, a recordable card?), it always amazes me how intricately music has woven itself into the tapestry of my travels. With just a small snippet on the radio or by hearing one of these favorites on my iPod, I am immediately returned to a place and time for a few short minutes. And as for future trips, I always know the music will find me one way or another…