Five out of six group members have reached our destination and only one left in Finland. That would be me! Right now, I am actually at the airport savouring the feeling of not having to worry about unfinished tasks anymore. Personally, I love airports as they always feel like the beginning of something wonderful, an adventure! But alas, I need to keep this post short and sweet, as the really interesting stuff is yet to come.
As I stayed behind for a few more days, I figured that I would have ample time to put my life in order before I leave. Of course, that is not how the world works, at least for someone as chaotic as me. So what I did was spend the last two days in Finland running around like a crazy person, buying contact lenses, sorting out studies and work and even helping out Will to get a copy of his yellow fever passport. The one thing I didn’t have time to do before leaving was this blog post of course.
This post was supposed to be about packing and what to bring, but after some thought I have managed to summarise my ideas into two pro tips. Of course, these are my personal views, but hear me out:
- The further away you go, the less you want to pack. I realised as a kid that a huge portion of the stuff I was taking with me when travelling, I would not use at all. Since then I have consistently left more and more stuff home, and for the past few years I have managed to travel with only a backpack. This is also the case now (see picture)! It makes me feel incredibly free, when I can just walk out of the plane and start exploring straight away. If you forget something, for example clothes, you can always get more at the destination. Just make sure you remember the most important stuff, such as your passport, personal medicine and for example, yellow fewer passport 😉
- When leaving Finland in the winter to a place like Tanzania, where the temperature does not drop to below 25°C, you don’t want to be travelling with your whole winter gear with you. This is where you have two options, both tried and true. Either you can make the trip to the airport itself into an adventure and just put on your warmest travel clothes and run to the train station (this works most of the time, but with a 60°C difference it starts to get difficult) or you can have someone drop you off and take your winter stuff with you. That’s a ton of freed up space right there!
The flight is about to depart so it is time to end this post with last minute feelings. I have never in my life been to continental Africa and I have no idea what to expect, but I am as excited as I have ever been. It feels especially good to be finally travelling with a clear purpose of getting something done. Let’s see what we can do!
Farewell Finland, let’s get this party started!