The Things They Carried

Heading to Gelder Shiel Stable Bothy, Eastern Highlands, Ballater, Scotland

(The title of this blog is a blatant rip-off reference to The Things They Carried, a highly-recommended book of fiction about Vietnam and the power of storytelling).

We arrived in Lisbon by air with two dogs, two dog crates, two large internal frame backpacks, a roller-board suitcase, two day packs, hiking poles, and our yoga mats. We pack approximately 10 days of clothes to be comfortable in weather temperatures between 40F-105F, rain, wind, snow, heat. Most apartments don’t have dryers, so 10 days’ worth gives us some leeway in case it’s raining and we can’t dry our clothes.

After 3 months in Portugal, we were able to get a car and leave behind our dog crates. Suddenly we had more space! This blog will list our current inventory, but I’d be lying if I said we need everything we’re carrying. We have an embarrassing amount of stuff. It takes us at least half a day to pack the car. However, we are full time traveling: we have no extra storage place to keep things which might come in handy if we need them. We don’t go back to a home base and re-stock. Sure, you could get by on a few outfits worth of clothes, but how long before you (or your partner) would get bored? As for carrying a piano, um, I can’t really come up with a good excuse for buying, and carrying that!

We have many interests: hiking/camping, yoga in the park!, cooking most of our own meals, swimming/surfing, sometimes going out to a fancy dinner or opera, playing/practicing piano, so we carry a lot of fun non-essentials, (a blender, a keyboard, sleeping bags). Our rule: as long as we can fit it in the car, we’re good to go! And the car brings us to some pretty interesting places…

It’s a freekin’ miracle that we manage to fit it all into the car (we are superior pack rats).

Trixie and Turbo are excellent travelers, they make themselves comfortable just about anywhere…

Up, Up, and Away! Bon Voyage!

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