Monthly Archives: August 2011

SUMMARY / STATISTICS for Africa

I was very well prepared for this trip and I used every item I brought with me with the exception of various medication, luckily I didn’t get sick. In Ethiopia there was one night I befriended the porcelain throne because of a bad street samosa, and two nights of extreme tissue usage due to a cold, but other than that I was lucky. Here’s a list of things that I found the most useful and another of items I should have brought.

 

 

MOST USEFUL:

 

 

– Head torch – no doubt about it
– Deuce wrist watch – a spontaneous $20 airport purchase, a waterproof rubber watch
– silk liner – used instead of the sleeping bag when it was warm, and as bug protection in hotels
– clothing line
– alarm clock (many early starts)
– ziploc bags – for anything from protecting my passport from water to bagging snacks to preventing soap leakage etc
– travel towel – lightweight, quick dry
– adapters – my shitty camera needed daily charging
– a hat and sun glasses
– baby wipes and hand sanitizer – especially in Ethiopia where you eat with your hands but don’t get napkins (or toilet paper)
– cheap sowing kit – surprise success for more people than just me

 

 

WHAT I SHOULD HAVE BROUGHT:

 

– binoculars – I forgot the small pair I have and really needed it for the game drives

– rubber bands – no particular reason, just useful to have
– a coat hanger – maybe if foldable ones exist? For drying individual clothes/towels in the tent overnight
– string – again, just a good thing to have. My zipper pulls broke, and I could have used the string also to tie my mosquito net to ceilings (with tape)
– many more extra batteries – the head torch being the main offender
– pocket knife – for the bottle opener and a tiny screwdriver
– small tupperware container – to keep soft fruit from spoiling on days I carried it in my bag
– tote bag – to only take the items I really needed into the shower/tent/laundromat etc.

 

 

ITEMS I BOUGHT ON THIS TRIP:

 

– sarong – for the pools, also used as a do-rag in places where I had to cover my hair
– fizzy bottle cleaner
– shampoo & shower gel – I couldn’t bring this for the entire time
– heel balm and pumice stone – skin gets dry out there and my old pumice couldn’t keep up
– a power strip / extension cord that accepts multi plugs – everyone wants to charge all their electronics at the same time and there will ultimately only be one outlet
– felt marker – to identify my water bottle from others
– duct tape – to tape my mosquito net to ceilings with a thin string, to attach adapters to loose outlets, to catch bed bugs in a hotel…
– iodine and band aid – I had run out of medical wipes and I didn’t have my band aids on me when I cut myself in the street once
– happy pants – airy pieces of cotton, perfect for hot weather in non-muslim countries
– a blanket – cause it was cheap and pretty
– more clothing items (tshirts and skirts) at the end of the trip – because I was sick of wearing the same stuff and also because I was no longer overlanding. Clothes and habits change when hotels and public transport are involved rather than tents and a truck

 

 

ITEMS NOT USED (-though I would bring most of them again)

 

– money belt – stuff was safe on the truck and in hotels
– sterilizer pen for water – we had treated water on the truck and elsewhere I bought bottles
– soap/shampoo/laundry soap strips – they didn’t work at all, total BS
– waterproof rain cover for my big bag – we never hiked in the rain etc.
– 99% of my meds – which was a good thing!
– condoms – …sigh…

 

 

 

COUNTRIES VISITED:
Germany 2x
Quatar – if you count the airport
South Africa 2x
Mozambique 2x
Swaziland
Namibia
Botswana
Zambia
Zimbabwe
Malawi
Tanzania
Kenya
Ethiopia
North Sudan
Egypt
Morocco
Spain
England

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