I lived in Florence, Italy for a total of 5 years and traveled a lot through Italy as part of my architectural education and teaching experience after graduation. My wife and I returned to Florence after 2 years and I decided to draw from memory what stuck in my mind during the first day, and with some jet lag too! I was amazed at the level of detail and and items my mind picked up, in some cases things that I had never seen during my 5 year stay. Drawing from memory is not an invention of mine, but I believe that the first few days of travel in a new city or place, our mind's 'sponge' capacity increases. Drawing enables me to record what my mind has selected to remember.

Drawings/Conversations

When I travel alone on business, I am often waiting ... for food, to embark on a plane/train, or in a ticket line. I find myself listening in to conversations, and sometimes, I hear one in English!

I heed Anne Lamott's advice to keep some index cards with me to write down important snippets of perfect conversations I made need later.

While in a lovely little restaurant in Cork Ireland in 2008, I was waiting for my eggs and overheard this from a young couple seated to my right:

Her: So how's your dad?

Him: Oh...he's a great big pain in the ass....

I did a lovely little watercolor of the many mirrors on the wall, but I can't get the image to post into this comment.

Fascinating Idea

Alito -- This is a fascinating idea, one that's completely new to me.  Thanks for your post!