During my first trip to Germany with my brother, we ended up taking a day-trip by train with a group from our hostel. Right away I noticed a guy travelling with an overly large duffel bag so I assumed that he was heading to the airport after the excursion. Boy was I wrong.
Inside the man carried an extra-large Teddy bear with a folding stool. He explained how he took it all around the world, taking photos of the bear. He even had a book of photos that he proudly showed as proof. The reason that he traveled with the bear had something to do with his son. I wish I remembered more of the details but this was probably around 7-8 years back.
While reading online I came across a story that reminded of that time in Germany.
CNN writes of a 25-year-old woman that has traveled for a month across Europe with a life-sized cutout of her father.
The title of the story drew me in immediately and I had to know more.
For over a year Jinna had a hard time coming to terms with the loss off her father so she decided to take him on a dream trip. She traveled across Europe with a foldable life-size cutout of her dad, taking photos in front of famous landmarks along the way.
Traveling with such an unusual companion “stirred curiosity throughout the trip“.
“Many people stopped me in the street, asking me if it was a famous person,” says Yang. “Most of the time when you see a life-sized cutout, it’s of Justin Bieber or One Direction, and it’s usually in a nine-year-old’s room. Lots of people stopped to take photos as well.”
Photos from the trip were posted on her blog and drew worldwide attention although not all of it was positive. Some people accused her of faking the photos, which she denies.
Yang says that when she set out on the trip she wanted to honor her father’s memory, bring peace to her family and inspire people to find hope and courage to continue.
She is now planning another trip for July.
Find out more in the CNN article here.