OH MY GOD I LEAVE IN TWO DAYS AND PACKING IS THE WORST!!!
I’m feeling a little bit stressed.
I generally hate packing. I’m not sure who actually enjoys it, but it stresses me out like whoa. Unpacking? Dump all that stuff on the bed and throw it in the washer. But organizing (not my strong suit) and minimizing all of my crap (also, not a strong point) is tough. I’m a classic over-packer, never wanting to be without something I might need or want. Also, this is not just packing for vacation — this is picking up my whole life and shoving it in a backpacking backpack and half a medium sized suitcase (Renee gets the other half). And possibly a regular sized backpack. And a purse. You see how this gets out of hand?
If I was just heading straight to Vietnam I would have no problems; however, I’m blessed to be going on an epic vacation that includes Jeju Island, Hong Kong (which we extended to a five day stay!), Bali, an eighteen hour layover in Singapore, and then finally to Vietnam! Do I really want to be carrying three full bags and a suitcase around with me everywhere I go? Definitely not.
There are many things that I can just buy at my destinations; however, there are some things I can’t. Like shoes, for example. Shoes. Unless I want to spend my days wearing nothing but unisex tennis shoes (I despise wearing sensible footwear, to the horrors of my mother and podiatrist) I have no options but to bring the shoes I need with me. The shoes for women in Asia or gorgeous and cheap — if you wear a size 8 or under (and a size 8 is kind of pushing it — it’s the equivalent of trying to find shoes in a size 11 in America. Slim pickings.) I happen to wear a gigantic size 8 1/2 shoe, and the last time I was in Vietnam checking out some footwear the ladies literally laughed out loud, pointed at my feet, called their friends over to have a good laugh and then waved me off. So anyway, shoes are going in the suitcase. I’m also a bigger size and a totally different shape than the typical Asian woman, so flattering clothes are also not easy to come by either.
So what to do? I think I have a plan. In Jeju we’ll be staying at the same hotel for the few days we’re there, so we can leave everything in the room. In Hong Kong we’ll be staying with Renee’s cousin, so we can store everything there as well. When we’re in Bali, however, we’re going to be there for a month hopping around from city to city and a few other islands, and there’s no way I’m taking all of that stuff with me. After doing some research I found a storage place that will lock up your belongings (and typically surfing or diving gear) for as long as you need, the price depending on how long you need the space. For our long Singapore layover we paid extra to bypass immigration and customs, so we don’t have to mess with our bags and we can leave and return to the airport freely.
SO, at this point I should probably get off of the computer and continue with the organizing. On Wednesday we had our seven year old graduation ceremony and I said goodbye to all my babies. Today is our last day of work (only elementary students are coming in for a few hours, so our day is cut in half) and tonight we have a going away party with our friends here on the island. Tomorrow is our final cleaning and packing day, and Sunday we’re off to Jeju! And yet it feels like there’s still so much to be done. Oy.
Tell me your packing secrets!