This is fucking it! Me and Sam are all packed and we're ready to go!
Tonight I'm staying at Sam's flat in Canterbury, where we've been going through our big list of stuff to take and arranging everything in our two rucksacks. The last thing to do was to write this blog, and I suppose this is quite good practice seeing as this is probably how it's going to be when we're away: being crazily busy during the day and then writing about it in this blog at night and/or the following morning.
So make yourself comfortable, get a drink and maybe some chocolate, and let me take you on a magical journey through events of today...
1st Objective: Get my shit together and take it to Sam's crib.
To do this, I had to pack all of my stuff into my rucksack last night. Luckily I got a lift into Canterbury this morning, saving me the utter hell of lugging everything up to the train station in Adisham (where I live) and then from Canterbury East station to Sam's flat.
My bag was FUCKING HEAVY. When I packed it last night I included everything that we could possibly need, as well as some unnecessary things. I did this in the knowledge that I could leave stuff at Sam's place while we're away, so this was useful so that Sam could share his opinion on what was worth taking or not, and then we could pack accordingly.
At home I could access the list we've been updating too which meant that I didn't leave anything out, so this objective was completed with ease. Stress? What is that shit?
2nd Objective: Go through EVERYTHING.
Once I got to Sam's, we went through our various ideas of stuff that we needed to do and stuff that we needed to take.
We spread out all of our important documents on the floor, made photocopies of all of them and decided where we were going to put them in our bags. We did the same with the 140 euros cash that we are taking with us (without the photocopying part...that's called money laundering). This went well.
Before unpacking my stuff and packing it again (there was a point to this!) and packing Sam's stuff, our equivalent of a higher being, The List, told Sam that he needed to clean his flat before he left so that it isn't covered in six inches of rotting grime when we return. I put waaaaaaaaaaaay too much Fairy Liquid on a sponge and everything was covered in suds :) but at least it was clean!
After this episode, Sam decided that cleaning was too much for me and sent me out to get my hair cut, which really had to be done. If I left it as it was it would have been an uncontrollable monster by the end of the trip, so this was essential.
I spent a FUCKING ETERNITY waiting in the hairdressers though. And I almost left my mobile there too. But for those who are interested, here is the end result:
So this part of our preparation went pretty smoothly. Objective complete.
3rd Objective: Buy some more shit!
We only had to get a few more small things; specifically one light waterproof poncho-type clothing article, another pair of shorts for Sam (especially if it's as hot in Spain as it has been here today) and some other small toiletries. Certainly not any more batteries... but again there were no problems; so far so good.
4th Objective: Get everything together that we're taking and decide on the things we're not taking.
Now this is where significant shit occurred. If you read my last post you'll know that we planned to take a tent and two sleeping bags in case we needed to stay at a campsite, especially if we're visiting rural areas.
The tent, despite being very light compared to most, was probably the biggest burden of the stuff that I took from home to Sam's flat. It made my rucksack very bulky, and you could certainly notice the difference in weight when it was taken out. We looked at the sleeping bags too and realised that, although they're light, the amount of space they would have taken up would have been ridiculous.
So what could we do? In the end, we thought that if we didn't take them, that didn't mean that visiting rural areas was out of the question. We could still go out on day trips to areas close to towns and then return to a hostel back in the town at the end of the day. Also some rural areas will have bed and breakfasts and so on, so not being able to stay in a campsite wasn't a massive deal. For the comfort it would give us by not having lots of weight on our backs and being able to fit all our stuff in our rucksacks MUCH easier, we decided it was worth it.
There were a few smaller things that we omitted from our luggage too, but they weren't a big deal anyway. So after sorting out our stuff, we had everything organised into piles ready to be packed.
5th Objective: FOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD
This is the deal: I WAS FUCKING STARVING. We were so busy doing stuff that I hadn't had anything to eat since breakfast at about 9.30am (it was about 7.30pm at this point). This is what our conversations became:
Sam: Ok, move that stuff over there, I'll go and...
Jack: I'm FUCKING HUNGRY.
Sam: So do you think we should take this?
Jack: Hmmm, maybe... but maybe we should get FOOD and then decide, because my stomach feels like a vacuous fucking empty piece of shit...
Sam: Shall we sort this pile out now?
Jack: Does it involve EATING ANYTHING? If not, then no.
...you get the picture.
So we went to Super Noodles! For those of you who don't know, it's a really good Chinese restaurant in Palace Streeet that is amazing in terms of cost and the amount of food you get. I would recommend it to anyone, it's great (although to be honest I was so giddy after realising the beauty of actually eating something that I would have said that about anywhere).
I am still so chuffed with that meal. That was the best last-proper-meal-before-leaving ever.
6th Objective: Get the shit in the bags.
This was the part that made me and Sam feel strange, but also very optimistic about everything.
It seemed almost too easy. Without the tent and the sleeping bags, there was so much more space. Clothes, toiletries, electronics, important documents...there was a place for everything, and everything fitted in perfectly. We weighed our bags, and they came to about 8kg and 6kg. What the fuck? We put them on our backs and realised that it was actually OK. I was especially surprised, considering how much my bag weighed earlier.
And then it was done. That was it! Nothing else to do but check train times for tomorrow and write this blog. Here's me with the two rucksacks:
We still can't believe how easy it's been. We keep thinking we've forgotten something. But this is actually it, and I think we feel so much better about this whole thing after today. What we're doing actually seems viable!
So I think that's it! I don't think there's anything else I need to bore you with!
So before I peel myself off this sofa and head off to bed, and this is from me and Sam: we love you all and we will see you when we get back. Keep following this blog, email us if you need to, and enjoy our journey with us. Why not make this drink and chocolate thing part of your daily routine?!
The next post is from Madrid. We'll see you there.
Jack - 24/5/12 - 01:08