Packing H-E Double Hockey Sticks

Thursday, March 27, 2014
Green Bay, Wisconsin, United States
According to Travelpod stats, I have visited 11 countries and 55 cities. This doesn't include my trip to China in 2008, my trip to Krakow/Budapest in 2006, my trip to Europe in 2001, the work trips to Toronto and Montreal at a former job and travel with the continental US. So one would think, with all this travel, that I would be a pro at packing a suitcase and wouldn't mind doing it.  
Just the opposite. I hate it. I loathe it. I dread it. 

If I could, I would pay someone to do it. I'm also worried I won't pack the right stuff. Do I pack that extra shirt? Leave it out? What should go in my carry on?  

And shoes. That's its own packing dilemma. It deserves a separate category. Athletic sandals for strolling? Tennies for more athletic activities? Flip flops for the beach and walking around the hotel rooms? A closed clog for when it rains? A nicer pair of heels for nicer dinners out? All of the above? 

It's never about space or weight with me. I always have enough room and my bag is never at its max. It's always about what. 

And it doesn't help that you have folks like Rick Steves telling you to pack a suitcase and then remove half of it. He also suggests doubling a sports bra as a swim top, which is beyond laughable and unreasonable. His suggestions make me feel guilty for packing Q tips (which I will not leave without). Apparently Rick doesn't do Colombia, so his packing highness is of no use to me on this trip.

 China was easy (allowed one bag). The Dominican Republic was easy (swimwear). Spain was easy (allowed one bag). Iceland was easy (warm weather clothes). This one isn't proving to be so easy.  

I've been told to take a backpack instead of rolling suitcase. Ergh. If I take a backpack it means my carry-on bag cannot be a backpack. This limits me a bit, and I hate making decisions.  

Panama City and Cartagena should be sweltering, near the 90s. But Manizales gets a lot of rain. Bogota is not like Wisconsin, but it gets cool at night. I'm not going to wear shorts when hiking Nevado del Ruiz, and I'm not going to wear my hiking boots on the beach. 

I know it will all be good, and somehow, someway, I will manage to pack what I need.

But in the meantime, I will do it kicking and screaming. 

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Ha, I completely feel your pain, and I'm only leaving for Virginia tomorrow! I'm thinking the backpack will come in handy for your day trips, etc. shoes are very hard, do they make Keens that couple double as hiking and dress? If they don't, they should. I'm sure you'll have a great time with whatever you take...or don't take.


I have a hard enough time figuring out what to take or leave just for MN, so can't imagine having to pick & choose for one of your big trips. Or I would remember something the minute the plane took off. If you don't pack the right stuff, it'll make for a great story later. ;-)


I'm feeling the pain, Cindy!