Packing for Hot and Cold.

From arid to humid heat and how to cope.

There is an amazing difference in types of heat world wide. Each has it’s own challenges. I’ll try to guide you as well as I can in what can be much more trying and exhausting than the cold. Here first are a few things to do before you go to places of extremes. Health and safety always plays a part in packing. the lighter the case the less stress on your body but you have to be sure of what you actually need in that suitcase.

Tiny suitcase and my bumbag.

With age comes less resilience to extreme weather conditions. I would suggest joining a gym. Not only do you strengthen your cardiovascular system (you find yourself puffing and light headed otherwise), but also your muscles. You’d be surprised at the amount of strength you need in your arms and legs for all the walking swimming and hiking you might want to get involved in. Lets face it, it’s good for you anyway! And now you have a reason and goal to get in that gym and your local swimming pool. I have written sections about health and safety so you can search those. It’s never too late to do some excercise and eat better is it? And now you have a reason, it’ll be so much easier! All round you being responsible for your travelling will give you the huge benefits of being healthier!

RETURN FROM TRIP

With heat comes innoculations and malaria tablets if your visiting any red zones. Your GP will help you sort this. Anyhow you’re doc will tell you at same time at your medical, go back for another one before you leave and after your fitness regime, you’ll be delighted with the improvement on your ” M.O.T. ” results! I have to say here, you don’t have to go great distances, especially if you have health problems. Consult with your doc and go for more modest trips. You will find your limits. The blog I will be publishing on Central Europe will probably be more up your street and so much to do there and easier travel with good infrastructure. BABY STEPS!!!

Alert: Yellow fever comes with it’s own papers that they say you’ll need for South America but I wasn’t checked once. Now we are all more clued up to the pharmaceuticals you need to make big decisions with vaccines now. Is this vaccine really needed and have I already covered the things which are important. This is your body that you are pumping stuff in so make some informed decisions on this level. As things change globally as to how trustworthy some of these jabs are, you should update your research on a regular basis.

The packing.

So on with the actual packing. I always try to preempt the economy airlines by packing a maimum of 8kg, in that way you won’t get any nasty surprises. They love to weigh your case at the very last moment or indeed point at one of those cages where you can see if size wise it’s too big. If going it alone you just don’t need all the extra crap. You are now a lean machine in more ways than one if you’ve listened to the health tips above.

Your hot climate packing list weighing in at a miserly 8 kg for those economy flight requirements:

  • one pair of knee length walking shorts and one pair beach shorts
  • 4 t-shirts
  • one swimming costume and or bikini
  • one pretty skirt for evening ambles
  • one large and long cotton shirt for covering up after too much sun or going into religious buildings
  • one large and long cotton shirt for the beach which can be left salty
  • one evening top
  • one cover all loose dress
  • bra and undies
  • trainers
  • pretty evening shoes and flip flops
  • A thin large sarong which can act as a beach towel and a cover for religious buildings
COVERING UP IN MOSQUE ISTANBUL

Weigh your case and if the weight allows, add extra bits that you feel you’d use . All heavy bits in small rucksack for under the seat on plane including your techy stuff and leads, chargers and batteries. your camera (mines an Olympus Tough which is for under water too. When you’re snorkelling you can shoot stills AND videos.) and a Kindle if you like. Needless to say you’ll have your liquids bag in there too for inspection at security. Take only small sizes of your favourite creams and perfume and deodorant pick up the rest when you get there.

YOUR BUMBAG WILL HAVE YOUR PASSPORT AND ANY IMPORTANT PAPERS, YOUR PURSE WITH SOME FOREIGN CURRENCY AND EMERGENCY MONEY, YOUR PHONE AND VERY IMPORTANTLY, YOUR DEBIT OR CREDIT CARDS. YOU MUST INFORM YOUR BANK AS TO WHERE YOU’RE GOING AND FOR HOW LONG SO THEY DON’T CANCEL YOUR CARD WHILST YOU’RE AWAY. THE ATM IS YOUR MAIN FRIEND ABROAD!

Frosty Cold Trips…..as on the Trans Siberian Express!

NIPPY TRIP!

This was the hardest type of travelling to get right, especially when entering hot places later. Rule of thumb is to travel in your thick and heavy clothes and have your layering clothes in the case. As usual, you will carry your precious things, laptop, IPad and batteries wires etc, your camera and heavy extras in your rucksack. Normally they want your carry on suitcase to be not over 8 kg. This is MUCH MORE THAN YOU IMAGINE! I had my Russian military coat for that trip, which was superb. Most of the time I only needed a long-sleeved T-shirt underneath and the usual double layer of fleecy leggings. Good quality gloves, thick natural wool socks specialist boots for freezing conditions. Apart from leggings, thermal t-shirts and your underwear a big knitted zipper jacket with a fleece lining. Some thin t-shirts and a cotton shirt and trousers for the train which is super hot. All clothing should be easily put on and taken off in layers. The boots should be able to slip on if you leave the laces loosely tied. Take a light smart shirt and trousers in case you do fancy a night out, ( It’ll never happen you’ll be too knackered ) and trainers. Flip flops are handy for the train and hotter places you go later. Finally your hat, your lovely warm furry hat. My ushanka saved my face in Siberia one day when the wind chill went down to -40.

EARLY TRAIN STOP ON FROZEN PLATFORM

Im afraid to say with ‘cold weather’ light packing, you’ll have to be inventive. Until you actually board the plane you might need to wear many layers of clothing. I have been seen schlepping around an airport sweating profusely due to my many layers of “heavy” clothes sticking damply to my body. Trust me it’s worth it, you can peel off the extra stuff on the plane and shove it into your dinky suitcase and cool off again. The large vodka you drink after is your reward and you can say a cheers to me while drinking it.

Your cold climate packing list weighing in at a miserly 8 kg for those economy flight requirements:

  • long windproof warm coat
  • 1 hooded zipper cardigan jacket with fleece lining
  • specialist boots
  • ushanka and good gloves
  • 5 varied thermal and non thermal t-shirts
  • 3 pairs furry leggings and 2 pairs of loose trousers
  • loose light track suit bottoms and top for the train cabin lounging
  • very light posh top and thin trousers for evening wear
  • smart trainers
  • 2 sports bras and 5 pairs of pants
  • Medical kit. Pain killers, Lemsips , eye drops , nasal spray , plasters , a good supply of any medications you’re on and multivitamins . See your doctor before the trip for a medical and consult.
MY CABIN ON TRAIN 20 MOSCOW IRKUTZ

On all my trips I take my trusty IPad and laptop on which i do all my bookings and watch downloaded films and listen to audiobooks.

YOUR BUMBAG WILL HAVE YOUR PASSPORT AND ANY IMPORTANT PAPERS, YOUR PURSE WITH SOME FOREIGN CURRENCY AND EMERGENCY MONEY, YOUR PHONE AND VERY IMPORTANTLY, YOUR DEBIT OR CREDIT CARDS. YOU MUST INFORM YOUR BANK AS TO WHERE YOU’RE GOING AND FOR HOW LONG SO THEY DON’T CANCEL YOUR CARD WHILST YOU’RE AWAY. THE ATM IS YOUR MAIN FRIEND ABROAD!

OVER AND OUT FROM IVAN THE TERRIBLE REBECCA.

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