What’s In Your Pack, Martha Edwards?

I’ll admit, I’m a bit of a pack rat — it’s my natural inclination to keep pretty much everything — but becoming a backpacker has forced me to scale back on my ‘must-haves’ when I’m travelling. Forking out £75 in London to ship half my stuff back home because I literally could not lift my pack under any circumstances was a hard lesson, but I’m slowly learning to be practical.

Besides the standard clothing and toiletries, here’s a list of some stuff that frequents my pack:

  1. You know that movie about the sisters and the travelling pants? Well, these are my travelling pants (well, they’re capris if you want to get technical.) They’re the most comfortable, versatile piece of clothing I’ve ever owned and they’re actually cute too!
  2. That’s Lamby. Lamby was my constant travelling companion when I was growing up, though I’ll admit, she doesn’t always make the cut these days. If I’m going on a long adventure, she’s out; but for a short trip, she’s more than welcome.
  3. This pillow/blanket combo was given to me by my former workplace and is awesome for travel!
  4. Tiger Balm. My trekking guide in Thailand, Com, swears that tiger balm is the miracle cure for any aches and pains and I’ve been a believe ever since. Try rubbing some on your temples the next time you have a headache — it works!
  5. The half-hidden Tide To-Go pen is a must for a clumsy girl like me. It’s a miracle stain remover. Notice how the label is worn away — that’s how much I use it!
  6. I am very rarely without a book. This particular one was picked up at a book exchange in Bangkok
  7. Day Planners are an essential for forgetful people like yours truly.
  8. Inhaler. A life-saver if you’re asthmatic. Literally.
  9. I got this silk Vietnamese sleep sheet in Hoi An a few years ago. It’s warm, soft and a great thing to have if you’re staying in questionable hostels.
  10. iPod. Need I say more?
  11. My glasses. I am near-sighted and though I don’t use them that much, I would really miss them if I didn’t have them. Plus it’s safer for everyone else for me to have them — especially if I’m driving
  12. Anti-nausea tablets. Just in case. I actually don’t get motion sickness, unless I’ve been on the tequila the night before.
  13. A miniature slinky. Actually, I’m not sure how that got into my pack.
  14. Ridiculously large sunglasses. Yes, I am a fashion victim.
  15. A flashlight has always come in handy. This isn’t my usual travel flashlight … the boyfriend seems to have pinched mine.

And of course, I always bring my camera but it’s not in the picture for obvious reasons. Other things I’ve found useful to have are string, a few plastic bags (for laundry or water-proofing,) electrical adapters, Band-aids, lots of pens (they tend to go missing,) and copies of all your important documents in case anything gets stolen (leave a copy at home too.) I’m sure there’s much more that I can’t think of right now.

And here’s a picture of my pack, complete with the Canadian flags and the baggage tag from my last adventure to New Zealand and Australia. It’s made by Outbound and it’s the ascent model. I got it on sale years ago and it’s certainly served me well!

What’s in your pack?