I fly out today, and will be at the Castle by tomorrow!!! It's all happening so soon!
As I write this post, I am still packing my bags.. Don't judge, I actually hate packing. However, I love planning my packing!! Remember this post on weekend trip packing tips from last summer? My packing strategies are not much different for my 2 month trip, except with some particular changes.
Bags: 30L backpack, large suitcase, large lulu bag/purse and small crossbody purse. You have no idea how much deliberation went into this decision!! After my program ends, I will travel out of only the backpack and store the suitcase to pick up later. It needed to be a bag big enough to carry 2 weeks worth of belongings, but small enough that I can handle it. It looks reasonable, but I will let you know how it goes! However, to fly out I am packing clothes into the backpack, and packing the backpack into the suitcase so I still only have 2 bags to handle (suitcase + purse). It is much less of a hassle to deal with less bags, and it also gives me an entire backpack of space to buy clothes/food/souvenirs to bring back from my travels!
Money: I feel awkward publishing how much cash I will be carrying so if you are actually curious you can ask me, but otherwise... I will be carrying cash, duh. I also got my credit card limit increased for just-in-case purposes, and also called VISA to let them know that I will be travelling so they don't freeze my card if I start spending in Europe all of a sudden!!
Clothing: As a general rule I do like to pack in the same colour family, but I also had to expand that colour scheme because I also tried to pack in non-cotton clothing as much as I could! Generally packing in the same colour schemes (and neutrals) reduces the amount of clothing cause you can mix and match more clothing. But because I will be backpacking/sweating/who knows how clean I will be... I also wanted to pack sweat-friendly non-cotton clothing. I packed my non-cotton socks, non-cotton bras, non-cotton underwear, non-cotton shirts and non-cotton shorts. Good to go! Cotton is not your friend!
Shoes: I'm bringing running shoes, keds, flats and flip flops. I opted to not bring rainboots because I can't wear them all the time and pretty much everyone I talked to told me they are a waste of space. My rain shoes will be my flip flops then, I guess. Not the most comfortable footwear but I definitely need them as shower shoes too. What shoes I bring backpacking is still up in the air. I don't think I will bring both runners and keds, and I won't bring my flats. But I'm not sure what I will do as of yet.
Important documents: passport, driver's licence, health card, travel health insurance, bank card, VISA, letter of attendance (to show that I am going to the UK to study). Photocopies in my bag, photocopies to my mother, and originals in my purse. That should do it.
Necessities: Bible, notebook, pens, water bottle, converter and adapter, tylenol, phone, laptop, flashlight.. I tried hard to pare down the items I'm bringing but it's so hard! I decided that these were the necessities.
And a few prayer requests before I go (thanks!!):
1. For community: to find like minded Christ followers, to find a church, and to trust that God will never leave me or forsake me- He is a God beyond all borders!
2. For ministry: to use the opportunities that I will have to share Christ's name, and the gospel / to disciple others while away!
I'm super excited, super nervous, but totally psyched to go! I will continue to post here to keep you updated. I cannot wait to embark on this adventure!