Memories are a doorway to the soul. We encounter a lot many people in our life, but we create memories with a special few. Those memories are dear to us, and we revisit them from time to time. These memories don’t fail us, they are our safe space.
We are forever looking to create more memories that can be our source of comfort during the dark days. We find solace in those memories and the strength to move on in our life. Some places are inscribed in our minds as memories. This is due to the memories which were formed there with our loved ones. Those places themselves become a part of our memory and hold a special place for us.
Let's read some stories about people and the places which hold special significance for them.
Hi, I am Alice. I have been working in the field of publishing for the last five years and haven’t taken a personal day in the previous two years. So this year, I decided to do something for myself. So, one late evening, I booked a single ticket to Santorini, Greece. My friend had told me what a magical place it was.
I reached the Santorini airport early at 4 am, and it was raining cats and dogs. I couldn’t get a cab or any mode of transportation to my hotel, and I was dripping wet. An old man driving a very old yellow Volkswagen abruptly stopped in front of me. I was startled, to say the least. He rolled his window down and asked me where I was going. I couldn’t answer him as I was so shocked, and I came back to my senses in about 10 seconds. I was skeptical about the invitation, so I said I don’t want a lift and was waiting was someone. To this, he replied I have seen you standing at that same place for the last hour, so hop in, and I will drop you. I was so exhausted and dripping wet to say no. I sat in his car we started toward the hotel, in his car.
He asked me what my name was and where I was visiting from. After these simple questions were out of the way, we began talking about Santorini. He told me everything about the place, the major tourist attractions, and the small, hidden local places. I would have never come to know about them myself or from an expert guide who is just looking for tips. The half-hour car ride had my mind bustling with locations that I wanted to visit. When I reached my destination, I thanked him for the ride, and out of nowhere, I asked him if he would like to show me around the city. He was delighted that I asked, and he readily accepted my proposal.
For the next five days, he would pick me up at nine from my hotel, and for the whole day, he would show me various locations which are hidden from the tourists. Some of those places were very special, and I felt one with the city and nature. For those five days I was with him, I had no worries, no deadlines, just a feeling of calmness. During those five days, I talked openly with him about my family, my job, and my dream of writing a book myself. He encouraged me to go after my passion and write a book on a topic that is close to my heart. Then it was time for me to leave, we had a teary goodbye, and I promised I would visit him soon.
After settling back into my life, I also started working on my book. By the year's end, I had completed my first draft. I named the book Santorini and the Old Man. After the book was published, I booked my flight to Santorini and gifted that old man my first book.
I had to share my happiness with him in Santorini. After that year, I visited him every year, and we would visit all those old spots in Santorini that he took me to when I was first there.
Santorini will always be special to me. Through Gift a Place, I decided to gift all of Santorini to my old man, as in that city, he made me realize my potential, and my book came into being. By gifting him Santorini, I gifted him a memory that is very special to me, as it made me realize my dream, and I am genuinely thankful to the old man I met in Santorini.
Grand Central Station, New York
Hi, this is Adam, a striving musician. I was coming back from Chicago, and my train reached the Grand Central station late at night around 1 am. As I was about to exit, I saw a woman, around my age running frantically toward the ticket counter. On the way, she bumped into a homeless man and dropped her phone, but she kept on running. I picked up that phone and went back to look for her.
When I reached her, she was pleading with the ticket counter person regarding giving her a ticket. I could hear the executive telling her that the trains had been canceled due to it being Christmas Eve. I could see she was devastated. I approached her to give her phone back to her. She collected it and said thank you in a sobbing voice. I asked her if there was any way I could help her, but she politely denied my help.
When I left the station, I saw her trying to put her broken phone back together. Once again, I approached her and asked how I could help her. She looked at me and told me that she had to reach Boston by tomorrow morning because of a very important work meeting. I offered we could go for a coffee at a nearby cafe, as that would take her mind off work.
Reluctantly she agreed to it. We talked for hours at that cafe regarding work, dreams, aspirations, and our future plans. At some point, I told her that I was an aspiring musician and singer. She got up and asked the cafe owner if they had a guitar. The cafe owner obliged and provided her with a guitar. She came up to me and said, “There is no better time than today to start your music career. Get up and sing.”
I took the guitar from her, and for the first time, I sang in front of a live audience. The people loved it. There were around 20 people in the cafe, and all of them gave me a standing ovation. This was the push that I needed. At that point, I decided I would visit the recording company tomorrow, and I would marry this girl.
It is two years from that night, we are again at the Grand Central Station, but this time I have a ring, and I will ask her to marry me there. I will also be gifting the Grand Central Station to her throught Gift a Place, as this is the place I first met her, and meeting her changed my life.
Some places will forever remain special to us. Be it a city or a station, these places are special to someone. They attach a memory to that place. Gifting a memory is the best gift you can give to your loved one. Gift a Place assists you in that process. It helps you show your special someone what they mean to you and what place holds a special significance for relationship with them.