After holding on to her travel guidebooks for nearly 20 years, Mary de Ruyter decided to throw them away. But letting go wasn't so easy.

I threw away my old travel guidebooks today. It was far more difficult than I expected. In fact, it hurt so much that I wondered if I was making a mistake.

I could be accused of being sentimental (I have a tendency in that direction), but for me, there's something quite potent about these books. My guides for Britain, the Netherlands and Scotland were acquired for my OE, from 2000 to 2002. I've lugged them

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