I’m not a light packer. I’m not a fast packer. I’m not an efficient packer. I’m not even 100% focused when I’m packing. I can pack for hours, staring at my clothes, and come out with the difference of two tops either being in or out. I’m just crap at packing. However, I’m proud to say that I am gradually improving over time (lots of it. I also stress gradually).
To give you a sense of where I was, let’s rewind back to 6ish+ years ago.. You know how you generally pack one outfit for the day, and another for the evening? I used to pack so that I was fully prepared for whatever weather Mother Nature decided to throw at me. Be it rain, sun, hot, cold, slightly chilly, mildly warm, breezy weather, etc, I had the clothes. Now multiply that by the time of day – day attire, night attire, and number of days on the trip. That’s just clothes. I haven’t even mentioned my toiletries, towels, hairdryer, shoes, etc. I was THAT bad.
My bestie packs for a whole weekend away, with her clothes, toiletries, a little blanket, PLUS a standard sized pillow, carrying everything in ONLY her pillowcase. I only believe this because my own two eyes have seen this on many occasions. She’s my idol (for many things including her gift for packing). I aspire to one day pack almost as well as she does (I’ve already accepted the fact that I will never fit everything into one pillowcase, unless it’s a day trip).
Fast forward to today, and I have learned many little secrets. A huge one is to roll clothes when you pack, as this allows you to pack more 😉 I also re-use clothes I’ve already worn, trained myself to go without a hairdryer, know that going away for 3 days doesn’t mean packing 3 pairs of jeans, become a little more stylish in order to mix and match a greater variety of looks. I’ve also realised I’ve been underestimate the scarf. This lifesaver can protect you from any type of “cold” that one can be exposed to in South East Asia. It keeps your neck warm, or your shoulders, or can double up as a little blanket! Genius.
As you know, N and I are leaving for a 3 week trip to France and Portugal next Friday night (well technically 5 minutes into Saturday morning). It is bloody freezing in France, and freezing in Portugal (keep in mind I’m from South East Asia so anything below 23°C/74°F already requires a scarf/light jacket). So at T-6 days from departure, with a general gist of what to expect with weather, and under strict orders from N that I am not allowed to bring too much or I will be forced to carry my own bags, I’ve begun preliminary packing of some clothes. This is what I’m staring at so far:
This doesn’t include the 2 jackets I’m probably bringing (my coat for the bloody freezing cold, and a furry jacket for the freezing cold), my toiletries (I bring everything, including my own shower cap), 2 pairs of knee high boots (one black, one brown of course, and perhaps even my trainers), perhaps another scarf or two to make 3 or 4 (two for outdoors, one for indoors post showering so that it’s clean), other tops that are being washed..
Oh, did I mention that when in Portugal for a week and a half, we will be staying it N’s mum’s house, so will have access to a washing machine?
Yup, I already know.