Sure, when I post a group of photos on this blog, I can always go back and look at them, but I seldom do.
I remember the days of 35mm film, when a roll of film would be processed into 4x6 photographs and arranged in an album. I would pull out that album when I wanted to remember a particular event or a trip.
I still do.
But with digital, vacation shots sit in a digital folder on an external drive, lost to the archives. I seldom go through these folders and bring up the photos, look at the past and mentally relive those times.
On my smartphone, all of my digital photos that have been uploaded to Picasa or to Dropbox can be brought up, but I seldom do it because I've set those files to be accessible only when I'm on Wifi, so I don't drain my monthly data to relive a memory.
One of the best vacations with my family was in 2009, when we ventured to Italy. It was the second time that DW and I had been: in 2004, when our daughters were only three and less than one, we left them in the excellent care of my parents, but it didn't take long for us to miss them dearly. We were in Siena, watching young kids in Il Campo, chasing pigeons and laughing. We could see our girls doing the same thing, and we promised that in five years, we would watch as our kids did the same thing.
In 2009, we kept that promise.
This little house was our central hub for the week, from where we would explore the Tuscan countryside: Florence, Colle Val Di Elsa, Volterra, Siena, and many more. The Medieval hill town of San Gimignano could be viewed from our villa, on the other side of the valley.
Though it was late September to early October, temperatures were still in the high 20s to low 30s, and every day, after we had had a full day of exploring, we would return to our villa and cool off in the outdoor infinity pool. No one else in the villa used it, and some laughed at the silly Canadians who braved the cool water at the end of summer. We always had the pool to ourselves.
After our swim, we prepared dinner in the kitchen and took the meal out to the patio, from where we could watch the sun as it set over San Gimignano.
Every sunset was spectacular.
I will always remember that vacation, always cherish our time in Tuscany, and our villa in Chianti. And although, after nearly seven years, I haven't put these photos in an album, they are the ones I tend to dig up the most, the ones that I don't mind searching for in my external drive's directories.
My family still hasn't decided on a summer vacation destination for this year. But there are always the old vacation photos to get us motivated to plan.