i could have brought so much less stuff.  As it was, I did pack light; everything I needed fit in the yellow backpack (osprey talon 22 liters) but I brought a mostly empty suitcase to carry home things I bought (fabric, buttons, thai fisherman pants, etc.)

The green purse was great for day to day, and big enough to fit my asus eee netbook.

Things I would bring next time that I forgot or didn’t bring enough of:

  • my headlamp
  • vitamin C
  • echinacia
  • probiotics (even here, where the food is pretty clean, I got food poisoning, exacerbated by motion sickness)
  • more lightweight wool clothing ( I like icebreaker’s fabric, I need to figure out where to source something similar.)
  • a fork and spoon

Things I definitely didn’t need to bring:

  • jeans/ pants (I wore leggings, dresses, or shorts all the time.)
  • books (well, at least as many as I brought.)
  • a sweater (I brought it for the plane, but it was really bulky the entire trip in my suitcase.)

Next trip, I know I only need to bring a few each of:

  • lightweight wool underwear and a long-sleeve shirt (icebreaker, etc)
  • light shorts
  • loose shirt dress
  • scarf (for plane)
  • shell jacket (for plane-  from nau)
  • leggings
  • light anorak (shown stuffed inside its pocket, orange, from nau )
  • a few light tank tops and tank dresses (the ones I wore I bought here-  they dried super-quick after washing in the sink)
  • chuck-taylor type sneakers and light wool socks, ankle and calf height

I brought other stuff this trip…but it was all unused.  better to have quick-drying wool and extra-lightweight cotton pieces than anything extra.  I always get really, really cold on the airplanes, and need special clothing for the travel portion.

most of the electronics I brought were perfect. I am so happy with the size of the asus eee, I’m overlooking the inconvenience of using windows.  also was happy I brought the lightweight camping towel, and my homemade silk sleep sack (why spend $65 when I have piles of scrap silk in my studio…so i have a patchwork sleepsack-  black, black & white polkadot, and purple…)

I’d also bring enough regular toothpaste so I don’t need to buy some suspect brand where the ingredients are all in thai!

and the things I overpacked…if I’d been traveling alone I probably would have read more, but as it was, I only read two books. and then I bought piles of blank books, and colored pencils and paper and sketching materials…which were used, to be sure.

so, the plan for next trip-  pack lighter, and plan to buy stuff in situ.  it’s hard to predict what will feel right, stylistically or functionally, in a new environment.  I could have stayed 3 months with only this small yellow backpack and the list above, and I wonder at the backpackers I see who are carrying packs that tower above their heads!

Posted by:brook delorme

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