Travel Essentials

Over the weekend, I made an overnight trip to Wisconsin to visit family (and, truth be told, to shop for cheese curds, Koop’s Dusseldorf mustard, and an Aaron Rodgers jersey — and failing in every endeavor). I try to pack as light as possible, but here are my must-haves for any flight:

  • Earplugs. Remember, I am an introvert.
  • iPad. My everything device for email, web surfing, journaling, blogging, Bible reading, Kindle books, Sudoku, and the latest issue of Sports Illustrated.
  • Dramamine, Less Drowsy formula. I get motion sickness and so far haven’t found anything better for relief.
  • Passport.
  • iPod nano. I don’t like to use up iPad memory with music, and my Nano is so much smaller and portable for runs. New downloads for this trip: Chris Thile and Michael Daves’ “Sleep With One Eye Open” and the Del McCoury Band’s “Old Memories: The Songs of Bill Monroe.”
  • Extra pair of warm socks. If my feet get cold — which they often do on a plane — I slip these on.
  • Cell phone.
  • Chargers. (Too many of them, in my opinion. When will we have universal chargers?)
  • A very small travel wallet with driver’s license, insurance cards, credit cards, and minimal cash.
  • Travel food: Lara bars, Clif bars, almonds, raisins. I can’t fly on an empty stomach and I’ve learned to always have a snack on hand.
  • A very small pill cup with pain relievers and prescriptions.
  • Eddie Bauer sling pack, which accommodates all of the above.

I try to avoid taking actual books and my MacBook if at all possible these days. The rest of my stuff — clothes and toiletries — goes in a duffel bag or a rolling carry-on, depending on the length of the trip. Dave and I joke that I am an “Expert Traveler,” which I certainly am compared to him but not compared to someone like my friend Judy, who travels all the time for work.

What are your travel essentials?

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