Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Yet more travel updates/lists

I promise, when this trip is done, I will (may) find another topic to write about. 
I'm hoping to go from this fizzing high-anxiety to talking about lovely special bits of the trip.  I do promise some pics along the way.

Here are a few factoids about me & The Trip:

  • I've been saving for this for 5+ years. 
  • When I started saving, I didn't actually think it would ever happen, but a few fortuitous things happened to accelerate my (extended) timetable.
  • I started planning with a list that included masses of "touristy" things
  • I've ended with a list that includes only those historic and brainy things that really appeal to me, and none of the tourist things
  • I am thrilled & overexcited & a little bit terrified to be doing this.
  • I'm taking things that I am prepared to ditch on the return trip & won't break the bank to do so (cheap clothing, socks, toiletry containers, etc)
  • I've set myself what I consider a generous per diem (max amount to spend per day) and I intend to come back w/ extra cash
  • I'm taking my own pillowcases.  I can't stand the hotel ones.
  Things I'm not taking:
  • a laptop/tablet - I'm wacked out enough about getting through customs and generally keeping track of all my stuff without having to worry about additional electronics
  • fussy clothing - it's strictly black jeans, 1pr stretchy pants for the flight, tank tops & lightweight cardigans, with a glorified windbreaker-type jacket & water resistant shoes
  • jewelry - I'm taking 2 pr of very simple/cheap earrings & a watch.  I never wear a watch, but I don't want to be yanking my phone out every 5min to make sure I'm on time for ... whatever.
  • Worries -  Once I get on the plane, once my butt hits the seat, all worries about the trip will be left on the runway.

Are there things that you take & things you leave at home?


  1. I gather you are preparing for a trip to London? I know you'll have a good time. Your packing list sounds good, but you will need to keep time if you are travelling on trains. I never wear a watch either and my phone is generally off and I can tell you that all those clock towers you see don't necessarily work. Well, that might be just here in the North which is far less wealthy than down south. Like many countries - the US for example - each region practically has its own culture. If you have a cash card you might inquire about whether you can use it abroad (and credit card people like to be warned of foreign transactions). I regularly pull money across from my US bank account over to Britain using my ATM card from my credit union. It is often the cheapest way of converting money. Another idea is that you may wish to purchase an A-Z map. Modern folk use their iphones, but depending upon your preference for or against technology you may find this useful (and it's a souvenir). Hope you have a love time! Look forward to reading about it.

  2. Thanks for the tips, Shelley. Yes I'm going to London! I have a current A-Z, printed a large-type tube map, updated my phone so I can keep in touch with family/friends but won't use it for maps/GPS, and am up-to-date on my international credit card. I'm only doing one day-trip that requires train travel (Oxford), but I think I'll need to be fairly punctual for the bus schedules too. I did purchase a Visitor Oyster card for all those bus/train/tube trips, and it's good for the Thames Clipper tours which I'm really looking forward to. I'm frankly tired of planning & really looking forward to just getting on with it.

  3. Hope the weather is decent for you - it's filthy up here in the NE this week! I looked up from my book this morning to see a thick flurry of horizontal snow - in late April! Ridiculous. So long as you have layers you can peel off and put back on and some sort of water proof with a hood (I find umbrellas a real nuisance, personally), you'll be fine whatever the weather.