Packing for a lengthy holiday has never been the easiest of tasks for me as my trips generally involve a variety of activities and destinations which all have their own wardrobe requirements! Packing is straightforward if you are just going to spend two weeks on a beach because shorts, t shirts and a couple of bikinis will suffice. This year I thought that a couple of weeks on the beach was exactly what I was going to get until I decided to add a three day visit to a ranch, throw in some horse riding and promised myself that I would keep up my running whilst I was a away.
The Clothes Mountain
So there I was standing in my bedroom last month staring at my new bag wondering how the hell the enormous pile of clothing and equipment I had amassed on the bed was ever going to fit in it! The shorts and bikinis were no problem but I really needed to include my jodhpurs and boots for the horse riding. Then there was my snorkel and mask which were essential if I was to enjoy that crystal clear Adriatic water and naturally I wanted something reasonably smart for the relatively classy hotel that I would stay in on the final night of my trip. I am quite happy to slum it around self-catering accommodation but I do prefer to look relatively human if I am enjoying cocktails by the sea!
I had a long debate with myself about my running gear but not taking it was simply giving myself an excuse to avoid my exercise routine. I appreciate that most people exercise and lose weight before they travel and have to wear their bikinis but I wanted to ensure that I at least managed to return home still able to get into my swimwear which probably wasn’t going to happen if the running went out of the window. The running gear had to go! Of course once I was on holiday I only managed two runs due to lack of time and the excessive heat. Well that was my excuse anyway! I should also mention the mountainous terrain in Croatia. I needed to have done just a little bit more training in order to cope with four mile runs up those inclines.
The one thing that proved to be simple was the underwear. With only summer clothes and running gear (apart from the jodhpurs) I didn’t need to worry too much about my lingerie. The simplicity and practicality of Sloggi Basic briefs was all I needed as these little marvels are perfect for both everyday wear and running. So my lingerie only took up a tiny portion of my luggage allowance which is more than can be said for the snorkel!
In the event I did manage to squeeze everything into the bag. I even found room for some cool bags and cold blocks which was probably ridiculous as I could have bought these when I arrived but hey! My only remaining worry was the weight of the bag which was, shall we say, bloody heavy! I thought it was touch and go as to whether I would be inside the 20kg allowance. The airport scales told me that my bag weighed 19.8kg! A rather close flirtation with excess baggage charges. Naturally I returned home 18 days later having not worn most of the clothes that I took. But I did wear the jodhpurs, boots, running gear and I used the snorkel – a lot. Lesson learned. Bugger the clothes, just pack your riding gear and a snorkel and you will have a great trip.
Article by Sally Stacey