So what do you pack for an Indefinite Travel Adventure?
I have no idea, I’ve never been on one before. So why read on? Because I’ve made plenty of packing mistakes in my ten or more years of traveling on shorter journeys, and I am hell-bent on not repeating them this time.
I have a rule, or rather a phrase that sets my mind at ease: They do have shops in other countries! That means if we forget something we can pick it up en-route, and if we decide to detour via Antarctica (in our dreams!), we will not freeze to death.
Now you may remember my post, Excess Baggage, in which I announced (in true drama-queen fashion, as though the world was waiting with bated breath as to the type of pack Sarah had chosen) we had decided to travel with teeny 40L packs.
Now the professional long-term traveler my scoff, “Are you kidding me dude, I don’t bother with anything over thirty-five,” but for us, 40L of space to stuff our lives into is quite a challenge.
One that we have risen to! At least we have so far, 13 days out from our departure.
We picked up our packs in the Kathmandu boxing day sale (not the Nepalese city, but the Australian camping slash travel gear store of the same name), at less than half price:$349, reduced to $129 each. Bargain.
The requirement was that they be light weight, and have a zip that allows it to open up , instead of one of those tube-type ones where you always pack the thing you need right down the bottom, and have to expel everything else from the pack in order to access it.
Sony E-book readers: Seems like the whole world has gone kindle mad, which is probably why we have gone Sony mad. Tyrhone is somewhat of a non-conformist, and rarely goes for the popular choice when it comes to gadgets. (When I met him, he proudly donned an i River mp3 player proclaiming adamantly that it was far superior to the popular iPod, and still does).
He has the new model equipped with a case with in-built light, whilst I have his hand-me-down older model that I can’t find a case for as they don’t make them anymore.
My Baby- The Toshiba Ultra-book Z830.
She’s oh so light at a weeny 1.1kg and a very skinny 10mm thick, and has a back-lit keyboard that I actually find very useful when typing in low light.
Tyrhone knows the technical side of things, and assures me she will rise to any challenges an amatuer writer/blogger/photographer/film maker like me can throw at her.
I had a hp net book that I was considering taking with me, but it’s no contest when it comes to weight, battery life, speed and function. I’m giving my old net book to my 2 -year-old niece in the hope that she will learn how to Skype…
Tyrhone is packing an Asus U31S, which though very powerful is quite jealous of his slimmer, cuter cousin. But as a digital artist and graphic designer, he needs the extra oomph for running Photoshop and other design programmes.
And we’re carrying a Western Digital My Passport 500GB hard drive with some movies and series (who wouldn’t want to watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians on a Cambodian island paradise, I ask you?), and to store our travel photos and films.
Tyrhone’s brother Brendan has very generously given us his old DSLR, a Nikon D200. We ummed and aahed about whether to get one or not, considering the weight, the size and of course the cost. Not ones to look a gift horse in the mouth, we are now the proud owners of a DSLR camera with a brand new lens. Look out world, we’re shooting! She’s a little heavy, but we’re hoping she’s worth it (can somebody tell me why I’m calling everything she?).
We also purchased a new Canon Powershot SX230HS point and shoot. She (why stop now?) takes full HD video, which I am really psyched about, and has a 14x zoom.
We are taking our iPhones (we do conform on some things) as we have managed to cancel our contracts, but had to pay out a bit for the handsets. Tyrhone will just have to wait till his meets an unfortunate end until he can get his hands on the Samsung he so desires. His disdain for all things Apple, as though they are part of some conspiracy to quite simply PISS HIM OFF is worsening. Please, someone get him a windows phone, pronto!
It protects us from the elements, the vital membrane shielding us from all manner of ghastly natural phenomenon: sun, rain, bugs, man-eating rats. Well maybe not them.
- 4 pairs of light weight, quick drying underwear (obviously I’ll be doing a lot of rinsing)
- 1 pr Light weight, quick drying trousers, which fold to 3/4
- 1 lightweight, quick drying black tank top
- 2 light weight, (you see a pattern emerging?) quick drying T-shirts, in white and blue
- 1 Polar fleece, (yep you guessed it, light weight, quick drying)
- 1 waterproof jacket, that folds up into its pocket
- 1 pair of shorts (LWQD)
- 1 cotton kaftan-like Indian style top, to keep the sun off
- 1 pair bikinis
- 2-3 sundresses, depending how strict I decide to be
- 6 pairs of socks, quick drying of course
- 3 bras
Tyrhone basically has the male version of all that, minus the dresses, bikinis, bras and kaftan. Oh and he has boy knickers.
I’m hoping not to look like a traveling fashion victim, but fear it’s unavoidable.
We both have a pair of runners that we’re hoping will cover us for the odd hike aswell. Tyrhone lives in nothing but his Asics trainers 365 days a year (except on days when I make him wear ‘dress up shoes’, i.e weddings), so he has nothing to worry about. I, however, am leaving my hiking boots behind as they are too big and heavy, so I’m hoping my Nike Trail runners which are supposedly water ‘resistant’ and seem to have excellent grip, will do the trick for the odd hike.
If we decide to do some serious trekking, I’ll re-evaluate (or beg my Mum to send me my trusty Salomon boots).
As for flip-flops/sandals, the jury is still out. But we will each have one pair, once we decide on the best course of action. I am looking into a brand called ‘fit flops’, which are supposedly very comfortable to walk in for medium distances, though I haven’t tried them on yet.
International adapter x 2
Clothes line with suction plugs
2x Travel towels (the feel of which makes my skin crawl, but it’s unavoidable)
LED torches (and possibly headlamps)
Day packs (light weight, foldable)
Tote bag (that folds into almost nothing)
Small wallet/purse with shoulder strap for me
Waterproof wallet for Tyrhone
A Hammock (thoughtful birthday present from my friend Kelly)
2x silk sleeping liners
Basic medical and first aid gear
And of course toiletries, but I think I’ve divulged enough now, don’t you?
So, that’s our life for the next few years, washing our undies in the shower and hoping they do what they say on the pack… We figure instead of packing for all weather extremes, we will cover ourselves for SE Asia, and if we venture somewhere cold, we will buy some warmer gear then.
We decided against traveling with sleeping bags, due to their weight and bulk, and the fact that we probably wont need them for a while.
We are thinking about purchasing a mosquito net, but we’re not sure whether or not we will need it, or if most places in SE Asia will already have them. Any advice?
Thoughts, suggestions, tips? All feedback gratefully appreciated!!!!