When I first left Colorado, first dove off into the unknown world of working from the road, I was secretly a little unsure. Maybe I’d want to come back. Maybe I’d have trouble finding clients. Maybe I wouldn’t like being endlessly moving, endlessly making new friends, much of the time alone.
Now, though, after four months without a fixed address, I’m feeling braver.
I feel even more drawn to Europe than I did when I first left the states.
I have picked up a new client or two along the way and my relationships with my ongoing U.S. clients are going strong.
I love starting over in a new place.
I’ve built a sweet little network of friends and loved ones all across Europe.
And I am no longer afraid of being alone. In fact, more and more, I think it’s a quite nice state of being sometimes (and it’s not a permanent one. I was mostly alone in Scotland, it’s true, but in Belgium, I was surrounded by friends. I was alone for most of my time in Germany, but almost never alone in Paris and Spain).
So, you see, I am cut out for this full-time travel thing.
And while that doesn’t mean I’ll never come back to Colorado and it doesn’t mean I won’t have a home base someplace, it does mean that I don’t need so many things tying me down.
So it’s time to sell my car and my hair dryer, tie up some loose ends, and re-pack my life for more than just a summer.
Of course, re-packing my life for more than one summer brings with it a lot more challenges than packing for a summer. Like winter coats. Or hiking boots, for example.
Good thing I bought a really big hiking backpack, right?
Still, it’s going to be a challenge. Which is maybe where you guys come in—stylish, practical, well-traveled people that you are.
With limited space, variable needs, and a slant toward minimalism, everything I pack must:
- Be durable enough to last at least a few months of travel (preferably longer)
- Be as multi-purpose as possible (hiking boots should double as city-walking shoes; shampoo can also play the role of soap)
- Be cute and match (being a full-time traveler is no reason to look like a slob…and everything should go with everything else in the bag)
- Be compact (if I can’t fold it, crush it, or tuck it, it probably won’t work for me)
- Be healthy and environmentally friendly
With these criterion in mind, I’ve started a wish-list for my re-packing adventures. Below is the general version (and here’s the Pinterest board):
- Crushable/collapsible dog bowl(s)
- A crushable/extremely portable, cute day bag that can double as a purse or a grocery bag
- Portable athletic shoes that work for hiking as well as city-exploring
- A ski jacket for winter temps and/or possible attempts at learning to ski
- A pair of cute shoes that I can walk in comfortably all day (and that still look nice with a dress)
- A durable hoodie that won’t stretch and/or come apart in the first few months of travel (I’m looking at you, two sweatshirts I brought last time)
I’m also considering buying a pair of small shears for cutting Luna’s hair along the way. It’s much cheaper than getting her groomed on the road and the shears would double as scissors as needed.
So, anyone have suggestions for multi-purpose, durable travel items? Is there anything you take with you on your travels that you just couldn’t live without? Who makes the best ski jackets and hiking shoes?
Please leave your suggestions below! (And stay tuned for all my delightful discoveries!)