Saturday, March 3, 2012

Packing for a Journey

I'm busy packing tonight for my upcoming trip to Brazil.  I love packing.  I love the anticipation of the trip.  I love placing everything in my suitcase just so.  I love making a packing list.  And I am completely enamored with all things "travel," whether it be tiny travel-size toiletries, mini appliances, or ingenius inventions to make travel more comfortable.  I only wish I could do this more!  I would go all over the world if I had the money.  But I am grateful for the opportunities God has provided so far!

My trip to Brazil is a long one.  We leave for Portland at 7:45 a.m., which is great...much better than those "up-at-3" flights!  Then we fly to Chicago and have a 5-hour layover there.  But this is cool:  A friend of ours is also flying into Chicago at the same time, so he's taking us to some hip Chicago restaurant where you can eat super-messy, fabulous hot, meaty sandwiches.  I'm excited to go there, but I can't eat heavy food like that before I fly, so I'll just enjoy watching the guys chow down!  Then we're back on the plane at 9:30, flying all night to Sao Paulo and arriving at 10:30 a.m. Brazil time.  Then we have a 7-hour layover before our last flight to the city of Joinville, our final destination.  We should be "home" by dinner time!

I've never flown all night before, so I'm not sure how much sleep I'll get.  But, believe me, I have done everything in my power to ensure the best sleep possible!  Check out my sleep gear...

At the top is my eye mask.  It is made of
memory foam and it is heat sensitive, so
your face doesn't get hot.  But it's a good 2
inches thick...looks like velvet goggles!
Next is my Cabin Cuddler blanket.  This is
amazing.  It's super lightweight fleece, and
it is shaped like an angel.  You sit on it and tuck
your feet in the pocket on the bottom, then wrap
the sides around your legs and over your lap.
The arms are almost separate, and they wrap
around your shoulders.  So if your feet are
cold but your upper body is comfortable, you
can leave the arm wings off.  Or, if your arms
are chilly, you can wrap your arms and leave
your feet and legs out.  And at night, you can
wrap up like a mummy and hopefully go to sleep!
The blanket comes in a plush bag that has an
air pillow inside that can be blown up to form a
soft, fleecy pillow.  But I have my TravelRest
pillow, shaped like a cane.  It offers head support
without going all the way around your neck like
most travel pillows.  It deflates in seconds and
rolls up tight.

I asked Jeff what he wanted to bring for sleeping, and he said, "Nothing.  I just use the pillows and blankets on the plane."  Yuck.  Too germy for me.  I'm bringing him a travel pillow whether he likes it or not!  As I was admiring my sleep set-up, I said to Jeff that I'd be wrapped in my Cabin Cuddler with my snake pillow under my cheek, my ear plugs in and my heat-sensitive memory foam eye mask on and probably not able to sleep a wink while he would put his head on the plane pillow and conk out for hours.  But his thoughts were the opposite.  He said, "Wow, you're really set up.  Maybe I should take something.  You're probably going to sleep great."  So, we're both a little worried, but I'm better prepared.  I figure that even if I can't sleep I can still be warm and comfortable!

This is me trying out my sleep gear.  I'll look
like a geek, but I'll hopefully sleep!

But lack of sleep is only a minor worry.  My biggest fear is . . . air sickness.  I pray every day, "Please, Lord, don't let there be turbulence!"  I get air sickness pretty easily.  You know those little bags in the pocket of the seat in front of you that are crumpled behind flight magazines and emergency instructions?  I'm the person who digs them out and actually uses them, and then has to hold them in my lap until I have access to a garbage.  Not fun.  Nor is the feeling of lasting nausea for the next 24 hours.  I plan to wear a scopalamine patch, but I'll take prayers if you'd like to pray with me!

Other than that nagging thought in the back of my mind (okay, so it's at the forefront!), I'm actually looking forward to the long plane trip.  I have lots of things to do...and eat!  I am also a snack maniac.  You just never know if you'll be fed on a flight, and if you are, if the food will be any good.  So I've packed little individual-size cans of tuna, crackers, Babybel cheese, power bars, dehydrated Fuji apple chips, raw/live spirulina green bars, almonds, green tea bags, and chocolate (one can't eat healthy all the time!).  I've also packed ginger lozenges in case I start to feel nauseous, and I've got a great collapsible water bottle that folds up when empty.

I like settling in once we hit cruising altitude and pulling out projects that I've been meaning to finish or a book I've been saving to read.  On the way down, I'll be mostly studying, but on the way back I've got two books I want to finish, "Blink," and "My Life in Paris," the autobiography of Julia Child.  Then I've got the new March issue of Martha Stewart Living.  I may watch a movie, although that's not a big deal to me...Jeff will watch one after another!  I'm purposely scaling back this trip, because I always pack too much and end up with a lot of dead weight from untouched projects.  I've also got my laptop with a good, long battery, so how could I ever be bored with that?

And now it's time to go put all those things into their proper places.  I've got my bedroom floor "staged" right now...two empty suitcase surrounded by piles of like items.  When I've gathered everything on my list and finished that last load of laundry, I'll start packing everything in, and probably pulling things out!  My ultimate goal is to pack less than I planned.  But my immediate goal is to get started!  So this is the official start of my open suitcase, a floorful of clothing and gear, and a whole lot of anticipation!

The packing process begins!

1 comment:

  1. I'll be praying for you ... on the journey there and back and your adventure in Brazil!
    By the way: I absolutely hate packing for a trip, so your perspective was refreshing!