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  • Writer's pictureswedishvikingprinc

To bring or not to bring?

There are so many blogs about how to pack well. I'm offering you one on how to pack really badly! No, it's not about rolling versus folding your stuff into your suitcase, although I 'm testing both theories. It's about why you should listen to the mistakes I have made. To be fair, I'm still making the same mistakes. I'm a slow learner. No I'm not, I'm a hoarder of clothing.

Anyway, here goes. The fight is real...

The luggage issue

I have begin by mentioning we had between us four suitcases and a piece of carry on each. Three large bags were mine! This is because I like my clothes and shoes, but, more importantly, my husband likes me to wear them too. I'm blaming him for my inability to cull because I am too much of a nutter to claim responsibility. Why did we have so much? Partially because of what I have already mentioned - I can't leave it behind.

The other reason is that we were going from a warm winter in Australia to summer in the UK, so you would think I would only have summer clothes. Nope. As I complain at the slightest gust of a cool breeze, I also had some (lightweight) jackets, jeans and boots. Good thing as Newcastle (one of the next stops) was cold...

My question is this: how does one travel between cold and warm countries, with one suitcase? As an example, we are planning to go from our current location in Italy (average temperature in August 28 degrees) to Scotland and the Shetland Islands (average December temperature 4 degrees). To me, that's a significant difference. We don't have a place to leave our stuff, and even if we did, how do we collect it and drop it off? Bear in mind, I do need to cull as most flights in Europe only permit (at best) a 7 kg carry on bag. If we want to bring a suitcase, we need to pay a colossal amount extra to get it on the plane.

I have found a solution: there are companies that transport your bags for you. The catch is that you have to pack it a certain way, wait ( sometimes a whole day) for collection as they don't give a time, then at the other end, wait for it to arrive. Pain in the butt!

It does make you think that perhaps you just give it all to charity and shop at the other end. That way you could literally just have enough stuff for the travel and your first day there. That works until it's a public holiday or you arrive in a country that you don't speak the language.

Probably a better solution is the concept of picking a colour scheme and having one pair of jeans (oh, the horror), a pair of flat shoes, plus sneakers, a skirt, a little black dress, several layers of t shirts and a jacket - preferably a rain proof one. Pop your miniature toiletries in a bag and basic makeup (that's probably the bit I CAN do). Add a few colourful scarves and don't do the following:

  • Don't pack loads of shoes to 'go with each outfit'

  • Don't pack loads of jewellery to match the different looks

  • Don't have have a million different colours and styles

  • Leave your personality behind and find a new one in each stop, but be prepared to leave t behind when you go or

  • Send all of your stuff by a third party to meet you at the next stop if you have the luxury of time and

  • Try not to go from very warm climates to very ones, then back again!

I wish I could give some serious advice, and maybe I will, but I'm still working on my obsessive compulsion to have a different look each day. It's not for anyone but me - it makes me happy - but at the same time it causes stress. I'll have to find a good charity in each stop to give my stuff to. It was easy in Vanuatu as the local ladies loved to get my clothes... it was fun to see my dresses walking by on the way to church on a Sunday!

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