Tag Archives: packing

Packing

I imagine that as I get used to popping back and forth between Rotterdam and Blackburn I will have my packing down to a fine art. I am already quite a good ‘light’ traveller and am often amazed at the size of suitcase people take with them for a week in the sun. (It’s going to be hot and sunny – you don’t need to wear very much). I’ve had practice on cycling holidays. A few weeks ago Sue and I sat in a café in Oxford and watched a group of far eastern tourists dragging elephantine cases down the middle of the road as if carrying out a pointless punishment – a chain gang or Sisyphus with his boulder.

Our budget airlines are working hard to get us better at packing. As they encourage us to take less hold baggage the rise of the specifically measured cabin bag market must have been significant. Each airline, confusingly, seems to have a slightly different set of dimensions. Of those flying to Schiphol, Flybe has the meanest allowance. 55cm x 40cm x 23cm and 10KG. This to me is still quite a big case and more than enough for a couple of weeks away as long as I’m not needing to take a smart suit.

My occasional commute between Rotterdam and Blackburn should normally involve no more than a modest rucksack. I will have clothes at both destinations and won’t need to carry toiletries – easy. It will become a quest to get through security with a minimum of fuss as fast as I can.

My next trip will, however, be a bit different. As Sue put it, in a fortnight’s time she’ll be taking be off to boarding school and leaving me there. I will be taking things this time that I won’t ever need to take through airport security again.

I have a packing list which contains some unusual things

  • 2015-08-14 15.46.28Wallpaper, 2 rolls – I took some wallpaper in the van in June, I’d got a really good deal and liked it. Last time I was there I realised that I’d miscalculated how much I’d need  – it has a large repeat.
  • Laptop, Chromebook and tablet – Laptop for working on, chromebook for carrying around and 7″ tablet for reading things on.
  • Clothes – Not just for a fortnight in the sun but to keep warm, decent and stylish day to day, (there are already some things there and I did pick up some shirts in a sale at Zara in Rotterdam)
  • Gifts – I’ve got some wonderful lovely friends who very generously bought me presents for my birthday two weeks ago, ‘to take to Rotterdam’. These include but are not limited to: A mug, A Minions stationary set, some Kit-kats, a pencil case, a book on failing exams, tea, a monographed pen, shortbread biscuits, a windmill, an apron, some British beer and a cravat. (A big thank you to everyone)
  • Text books – As I said last week, some of these can be rather heavy.
  • My admin file – It is amazing how many pieces of paper I’ve been collecting that need to be carted around.
  • A couple of cook books – trying to use Dutch language ones might result in a number of culinary hic-ups.

For this next trip I have booked ‘hold baggage’. My reputation for travelling light will be banished and I will be forced to struggle with two bags from the airport to the apartment.  Even with all this I shall only be dragging a fraction of what some people take for a long weekend in Ibiza.