Before I got my first smart phone, I would always travel with an address book, a watch with alarm function, a small photo album, some sort of music player, etc. These items, while necessary, added a small but significant amount of weight to my luggage, so when a device came out that included all these functions plus many others, I was elated!
Still, I must admit that there is one distinct benefit to having a dedicated alarm clock while on the road: you can set it up and have instant access to the time at any point without having to flip open or wake up your cell phone. Just look at the clock face on your dresser or nightstand and you know what time it is!
Even though I take the pragmatic approach these days and leave my travel clocks at home, I still have a small collection of these lovely timepieces.
Blue & Gold Europa Travel Alarm Clock
This wind-up folding travel alarm clock by Europa features a distinctive but legible font for the numbers on the clock face. The two hands have dots of luminous paint probably containing radium, as do the twelve dots sitting outside the circle of numbers.
The case is a clear and pleasant shade of blue, while the metal details as well as the back of the clock are done in gold.
As you can see, my model was made in Germany, although I believe some Europa clocks were also manufactured in the United Kingdom.
|All closed up and ready to travel!|
Red & Gold Junghans Travel Alarm Clock
The outer shell of this Junghans travel clock is done in a wine red color with a texture reminiscent of cracked leather. Like the Europa piece above, the hands are coated with substance containing radium to make them glow in the dark, but here the insides of the numbers are also filled with this substance.
Did you know that the girls who used to paint these radioactive pigments onto clocks used to come down with radiation poisoning regularly before it was discovered in the 1950s that their practice of licking the brush to keep it pointed had deadly results?
Silver Raketa Upright Travel Alarm Clock
Raketa ("Rocket") clocks were high-quality timepieces manufactured by the Petrodvoretz watch factory in the former Soviet Union, hence the "MADE IN USSR" printed in small letters right above the number "6".
This particular model is small with a clean, easy-to-read face that comes with a colorful plastic container for traveling.
The back has a word printed in Cyrillic letters above one of the dials which I'm sure one of my Russian-speaking readers can translate. One dial knob is missing in the photo below because I forgot to notice it had fallen off when I took it out of its case. It has since been replaced.
Travel clocks are not difficult to come by in my experience, since the demand for them has plummeted in recent years for the reason mentioned above. They make a lovely addition to bedrooms decorated in vintage or retro themes. And as long as you wind them regularly, they will keep time for you and wake you up at the correct hour without having to plug them in or insert a battery.
So tell me, do any of you have vintage or antique clocks in your home?