Joey: (walking up carrying a brown paper bag) Hey!
Monica: Oh, hey! Oh good, you brought food!
Joey: No, it’s just my luggage.
yeah well this particular packing list is sort of like that…but with a Trader Joe’s reusable bag.
They are the perfect size, sturdy, cool looking and are wonderful even if you can’t really sling them over your shoulder (but really, if I was THAT concerned with it, I wouldn’t be using Joey Luggage.)
For a last minute “Hey! let’s jump in the car after work run off down the coast this weekend!*” like in college. (yes you are allowed to stock up on munchies at Trader Joe’s on the way out.)
Trader Joe’s grocery bag
Trader Joe’s citrus sampler kit
polar fleece sweatshirt
*We’ll assume you don’t have prior commitments, your cell phone is charged and you don’t have pets that will starve without you there.
So, I used to be able to pack 2 weeks before a trip and just grab my bag and go! Everything was great! I had pants! (and under pants!) but now, not so much.
For some reason I seem to get a little distracted by the right shirt (or 4) and I lose sight of the whole “what to wear over my butt” issue.
Sure, I have what I wear on the plane, but when I go with a purple/black theme on the plane and end up packing a whole khaki/red/orange theme in the suitcase, it looks a little like clown college in a bag.
My new approach is to casually sneak up on the packing and then pounce right before I leave so it doesn’t know what hit it.
I wear my clothes as the weeks pass and then when I wash them and think “Oh this shirt is my BFF!” I fold it and toss it in the suitcase for the pre-leaving sanity check.
This time my packing list deviated from my previous list (and I’ll make a new one if you care), but essentially, I looked at the weather and decided zip off shorts and the new cute jammies as pants would be a good weight. I did put the plaid ones that go with my Monterey sweatshirt in there, but I also lost my tiny little mind over some travel jammies from Nick and Nora at Target last weekend that with just a slight shift in t-shirt color will work with most everything else.
I figure with the weather as it is, I’ll probably end up in shorts the whole time anyway. (cross your fingers nothing crazy happens to the weather, I am leaving my down jacket at home this time).
New Texas packing list:
-black zip off pants/shorts
-orange long sleeve shirt
-purple long sleeve shirt
-white long sleeve shirt
-purple/grey patterned sweater (the artist formerly known as “new sweater”)
–black vneck merino wool sweater
-*grey short sleeve shirt with silkscreened fishie
-*grey hoodie sweater
–Nick&Nora “ports of call” jammies
-plaid pink/orange jammies
-*10 year old (but still the best damn jacket I own) Eddie Bauer parka**
–black flip flops, possibly the red ones, too. orange flip flops
-2G Firefly with Portable Apps/external drive
-fold up cooler
*plane wear ** the word parka intimates that it is super warm. It isn’t even insulated. But it is long (comes to mid-thigh on me), I can scotch guard it and walk around in Paris drizzle and stay dry, it has a waist cinch, a hood, sleeve snaps to keep the wind from going up your arms and the best pockets ever. I’ve worn this in weather as low as 20 degrees F and in rain and after it gets really ooky, I wash it, scotch guard it again and wear it for several more trips.
***I wasn’t going to bring this, but then I got into a book and realized I didn’t want to leave it til I got back.
This trip includes a plane trip to Texas (need accompanying amusement), a trip to my dad’s, mini road trip to my grandmother’s, actual road trip across the state to my other grandmother’s (if you do the travel math its easier and cheaper to drive) where I meet up with mom being her own airline and then return trip home.
So there are some things I am taking that I wouldn’t necessarily need for something like the Green Bay excursion or a Kailua-Kona foray.
*The REI duffle is what I used to pack my backpack in on the plane ride out for the AT and it is checkable. The EBags weekender I would prefer not to check so if I bring extra stuff home, as I always end up doing when I visit family, I can just put everything into the big REI one and check it without having to worry about it being scuffed or manhandled.
They are pretty militant about 2 carry-on things now and I know myself about having to carry and manoevre things on the plane… I get too crabby to deal with it.
*remember you have to carry this comfortably even when you have your full pack on, so a daypack that doesn’t attach can be a tedious chore and I tend to hand things that I have to work to carry to the nearest busker as a tip.
Khaki Cargo pants
Really good walking shoes (I use Keen’s or my Merrell boots-I’ll leave it to you to decide yours, just remember that you need good foot/ankle support as you are carrying all your stuff (perhaps 20 pounds) on you for long distances on hard surfaces.)
sleep shirt or light sweatshirt (you can always buy clothes when you are there… I actually prefer this… especially on beaches, the roadside vendors always have the coolest clothes.)
2 scarves (I use the pashminas-useful as a blanket or a scarf)
Jammies/hotel wear (I tend to go with yoga pants as mine are quick drying and can double as another pair of pants.)
swimsuit – for the beach and less-than-private shower facilities
crocs/ flipflops / shower shoes – I like Crocs because I can walk in them for long distances, but they can be a bit bulky (though for the ladies, the Mary Janes are much more manageable). However, they are waterproof and if you are staying in hostels (or skeevy hotels 😉 ) you want to wear these in the shower. Really.
Camera+charger and spare cards
A book (and just trade someone for a different one when you are done. Works on the AT, works in the rest of the world.)
A thumbdrive(and portableapps configured***) for internet cafes -card adapter for your camera** card + place on the web to upload them (flickr or XDrive, etc)
Silk Sleep sack (good for both hostels or when the harsh chemicals that they wash sheets in hotels in burn your skin as they do mine. This is also good for adding another +10 degree rating to your sleeping bag without adding a ton of weight or having to buy a new one.)
**or, instead of chargers, bring along your USB cables (bonus if multiple things you have charge off of mini USB) and bring a Solio [My review | Amazon] and its wall charger. You can tie to the top of your backpack and let it charge in the Cezanne-esque light of the valleys in Central France or plug it into the wall where you are staying.)
***just install portable apps to a directory on your WIN machine and start using it. After about 2 weeks of regular use you will have all your bookmarks and setup about like you like it (actually, I recommend you do this anyway as a backup). Then just copy it to your thumbdrive and go play! Another sneaky trick is to double up on the adapter and put a memory card in it to hold your portable apps instead of buying a thumbdrive (and portable apps sits quite happily on a 512M card, so you can use old cards that aren’t big enough to hold your larger pixel depth images from your camera.)
….or you can just put a bunch of clean underwear in a backpack and go! (As a matter of fact, my cousin put two skirts, two shirts and clean undies in a carry-on bag and did just this.)