Last year, I confessed to being a hodophile (which is just a fancy word for someone who loves to travel).
Now I’m admitting to being a phillumenist.
If you don’t know what a phillumenist is, don’t worry — I didn’t even know it myself until yesterday, when I came across the word in a trivia quiz.
A phillumenist is someone who, naturally enough, engages in phillumeny: namely, collecting souvenir matchbook covers and match boxes. The word was coined in 1943 , derived from the Latin “lumen” for light, “philo” for loving, and “ist” for one who does something.
It’s apparently a particularly popular hobby in the UK, though major collectors are scattered across the globe.
My own collection dates from my childhood, and, truth to tell, I haven’t really practiced much phillumeny since the 1980s; my interest waned, and labeled matchbooks are also less ubiquitous… Continue reading
Over the years, I’ve picked up dozens — well, probably hundreds — of souvenir T-shirts from my travels.
I almost always buy at least one, and often more, from each trip. Some haven’t even fit me very well, but I liked the look of them, so I bought them. Others I’ve worn so many times that they’re practically threadbare.
But no matter how well worn or ill-fitting, I had a hard time throwing them away. Well, truth be told, I never threw any of them away .
They were, after all, souvenirs of my travels — one of the few things I regularly collect from my trips — and remind me of places I’ve been, cruises I’ve taken, hotels where I’ve stayed, or restaurants I’ve loved (or that just had cool T-shirts).
Most that I… Continue reading