There is a sketch from the old Nickelodeon show All That in which Kenan Thompson plays a character named Baggin’ Saggin’ Barry, who wears circus-tent sized pants. Throughout the scene, BSB reveals that his pants, in addition to having flair, serve as a superstorage device. The items start small, such as bottled water, and become more and more preposterous. Inevitably, BSB pulls out a dining set or an airplane or something else that would have caused major chaffing.
My packing strategy followed a similar drama. Everyone, even my own family as they watched me stuff my life’s belongings into a 3500 cu backpack, inquired as to what, exactly, I would take with me to survive for two months. Here are the basics, and we will see if prudence translates to practicality over the next few weeks:
I hide this body lotion in a random compartment for myself to find as a pleasant surprise, because it smells so nice. It’s definitely a guilty pleasure, which I justified by its minute size. The rest is absolutely necessary for travel in India, where running water and attached bathrooms aren’t necessarily guaranteed in accommodations. I guess I will be abiding by Sheryl Crow’s “one-ply” rule judiciously.
I have dedicated at least 1/3 of my backpack to bug and rain deterrence tools. At least the cool rain will feel good on all those mosquito bites?
I sound like I am packing a rattlesnake in my carry-on, but the added airport security check sure beats going to the nearest hospital with my spleen hanging out of the rickshaw.
This L.L. bean bag works wonders for travel. I managed to fit my make-up, multiple toothbrushes and toothpaste, a sewing kit, nail clippers, hair accessories, earplugs, and the ubiquitous wet wipes into its small frame.
This is the bare minimum amount of material that will transport me from one end of the globe to the other. Notice the House of Representatives throwback on the card case. I have to pull my weight somehow, since I will miss 4th of July.
Because I will be working for CReSIS for two weeks of my trip, I needed to be well-connected and able to record a variety of information. I think I could probably send out radar signals with all the equipment I am loaded up on. I am not thrilled about lugging around my large notebook for the duration, but I need it for work and school.
I ended up taking two skirts, one pair of jeans, five shirt, some tights, and one pair of shoes, which still feels excessive given the amount I plan to buy. I bought a pair of Keen Newports, which should survive the torrential rains with good sole support.
I would like to sleep for the 24 hours of my transit, but even my sloth can’t meet the challenge. It was so difficult to decide which books to bring, but I will surely finish both of these before even landing in Delhi. I also brought a few letters from friends and family with me, too, which I will certainly keep close and look at often for comfort.
All of these things inevitably must fit into my backpack, although I have forfeited some space in it for a duffel bag to use as a carry-on. Even at this bare minimum, I feel like a packhorse, and will be looking to shed any bulk I can whenever possible. Although, unlike BSB, I cannot fit an airplane in it, I feel as if I could as I prepare to board one in KC at this very moment.
It was difficult to hand over my backpack to the counter employee at check-in, trusting that somehow, like me, it will be circulating a bit dazed at baggage claim, all the way in Delhi.