This is me for the next 27 months
How does one pack for a trip that lasts for 2+ years? It definitely takes a bit more planning than a weekend getaway. For me it starts with a detailed packing list. Thailand is hot year round, so all my warm weather clothing stays home. There's this thing called "riap roy", which I believe is their version of business casual, so I'm bringing what I consider to be an excessive number of polo shirts. (three)
Actually, I'm bringing very little clothing, as almost any apparel can be purchased there for dirt cheap. Thailand is notorious for their knockoffs. My focus has been on bringing items that I'm not certain will be available, or my favorite versions of them, like my plastic cutting boards and wooden mixing spoons. I've stashed two quality kitchen knives and a Magic Chef carrot peeler. I even squeezed in my salad spinner. I'd bring my blender, juicer, and food processor if I could. Obviously my priority is with kitchen tools.
I believe I am packing light, as I only have one large suitcase, a duffel, and my laptop bag. I could carry on my duffel and check another large suitcase, but it would be a huge pain to get around. A few other specialty items I made room for:
500 GB Hard Drive: Not only is it handy for backing up important files from my laptop, but I've caught wind of a flourishing black market hard drive exchange among peace corps volunteers. You never know when you might meet someone with decent taste in movies and music.
Trail Running Shoes: I limited myself to just two pair. I figure I can pick up some cheap road shoes there. Additionally I am bringing my hydration pack, about 5 pounds of GUs/electrolyte tabs/etc, and my Garmin watch. There are a lot of runners in the PC community. Looking forward to running some races with them.
Big Boggle: One of my favorite games. The letter cubes are also handy in the classroom.
Handheld GPS: I was so glad I brought my geocaching gear with me to Japan, so it was a no-brainer to bring it with me to Thailand. Hiking is more fun when there's a treasure hunt along the way.
Portable iPod speakers: I've lost track of how many trips and countries they have been with me. Perfect for listening to music around the house or on the beach.
Crossing my fingers that both bags make it to my final destination. I'm off to Seattle in the morning, and then Thailand on Saturday.