It has been 6 years since our last backpacking travel being Burma and that was only for 3 weeks, so we, correction, I, was a little out of practice. I just was not ready to start our adventure. Needed at least another week to have that complete sense of preparation. But the fact that we had decided on the spur of the moment in late August and booked our flights within a day of the decision, did not really give us the necessary time to finalise our jobs, prepare a house for rental, move and sort our life into boxes, let alone cull our lives into a backpack for 12 months. It is a race against the clock.
One week before we fly out and with Ben in Adelaide and me in Wollongong, I constantly wonder what we were thinking departing for this adventure on 4 January. With an insane race to the end of the month between finalising work, travel vaccinations, house maintenance, passports (yes this little kiwi applied for an aussie one) I have barely no time to prepare what I am taking with me. I take advantage of the post Xmas sales and save money on my new trekking shoes and day shoes, new Goretex rain jacket (my shell) and a polartec warm jacket (my middle layer) for visit to Patagonia. The only downside of not having an itinerary is not knowing what to take…so a lot of ‘what if’s and just in case’ clothes were thrown on the bed beside my backpack.
Realising I now have far too much to carry, I concede to leaving my heavy Canon 7D and my lenses behind. An on going joke with Ben and his brother Jordan, who already have taken the road to owning lightweight mirrorless cameras. At the last minute I purchase a Sony Nex 6 online and race to Sydney to pick it up. Having only used Canon for many years (including the days of film) I am relearning the functions of another camera and hoping I made the right choice.
T minus 48 hours and I decide to pack. They say to pack and then half again…well I halved and halved and still couldn’t lighten the load. But 20 kgs later with the clock beating me, I decided to take everything and would deal with it when I get to Chile. Am hoping that we don’t get to wear the pack for a while and catch taxis from the bus/airport. Ben is used to my total lack of organisation when it comes to packing for a trip but I call it organised chaos…it’s me and I get there in the end. I will be glad to not have to make any more decisions on clothes and enjoy just having my few items in one pack. Hmm…will see how that long this lasts.