Business day trip: How minimal can you go?

A day trip for business to Delhi this past week presented an opportunity to try and travel as light as possible. As there was going to be no overnight stay extra clothing and hence a large bag was not required so challenge became how little could I take..?

My experience has been that if one is prepared well for any trip – has thought through what he is going to wear and what he will need to use the trip itself just becomes better. There is something about the process of conscious decision making, planning and being prepared that allows any trip from a day to a 3 week expedition to just be more fruitful and enjoyable – travel itself has so many possible hiccups that taking self inflicted ones through bad planning out of the equation – like forgetting a phone charger – it just makes for a smoother ride.

Luggage solution of choice was the compact red folio picked up from Zara a couple of years ago on a whim but that has proved itself useful (and acceptably stylish) on many a business trip – in the absence of a tie it nicely sets off a blue suit. So to filling up the folios limited space without getting that bulging-bag look – first item in: iPhone 5 car and wall charger plugs with a single cable, the only thing worse than running out of battery is running out of battery while travelling and scrambling around looking for juice or a (working) charging station (incidentally with a delayed flight on the way back and unable to find an empty plug point the charging station at gate 37 in Delhi airport only had 1 iPhone cable working (note Vodafone) – and no sooner that I had claimed it that 2 others came by looking for juice no doubt unable to find a spare plug point themselves or having left their own charger at home and after a day’s worth of travel were also running low). Sunglasses next – Dehli being a sprawl meant meetings were spread out and so car comfort has to be a prime consideration, and took the risk of risk leaving the case at home relying on Ray-ban build quality for protection.

Onto personal hygiene – mini Listerine mouthwash to quickly refresh after copious coffee (had woken up at 4am) and before a meeting, (I always pick up a few spares from the Four Seasons spa in Hong Kong – always very handy), Dettol hand sanitizer (ah those old trusted brands from ones childhood) to avoid an inconvenient stomach bug if forced to eat manually on the go (in India am convinced it’s ‘the hands’ that spread the stomach bugs more as opposed to the food). Neutrogena lip balm – a robust formula that doesn’t melt in the subcontinents heat and conveniently available widely in Mumbai.

Stationery-wise – a simple Uniball pen for taking notes – find ease of ink flow and quick drying ink better than any ‘prestige’ to be gained pretending to be important with a Montblanc or such – who ever notices a pen these days? Opted to leave behind my lovely ‘Want to make one take notes’ Kokuyo Campus wide notebook – even though it is a perfect fit in the folio it just took up too much space – decided to take notes on plain paper and type them up and staple the leaves into the notebook at a later time. (the notebook/note-taking obsession is a (long) topic for another time)

Next media – for reading materials my trusty iPad mini (the best size in my opinion – its easily held in the palm of one hand) left the sleeve at home to save packing space. Reading wise I recently received an scanned copy of Jesse Livermores ‘How to trade in stocks’ from 1940 and was keen to try and read it in it’s entirety on the plane and see what Livermore’s method was, his first book ‘Reminisces of a Stock Operator’ after reading over 200 books on markets and trading still remains the most entertaining and insightful, for alternate reading in case one bors of the serious stuff then 3 recent editions of UK Esquire loaded on in advance for times such as this. Have found that having materials such as this regularly downloaded and readily available in advance reduces tasks in that time constrained period just before a trip or the need to pick up random and bulky reading materials at the airport – one can just relax knowing that he has pre-selected media for his precious alone time during a flight.

Pre-selected audio entertainment on a flight is very important – I mean how often these days does one get to just relax a listen to music..? While large can-headphones are ultimately preferable for flying due to insulation capabilities opted for my in-ear noise isolating Klipsch S4 II recently picked up in Singapore. Music wise Loaded up John Bs ‘Light speed’ and Black Keys ‘Brothers’ – am a spotify convert after losing my entire music collection in hard drive crash so didn’t have too much handy on mp3 (in hindsight should have made better use of Spotify’s download feature allowing one to listen without an internet connection – note to self for next time).

Finally – a slim tie – in case a meeting or travelling companions warranted a smarter look, keys so one can re-enter his home, and finally ID, credit and hard currency contained in a Tumi money clip wallet – incidentally this is my about my 6th purchase of the exact same wallet – I feel I have the ‘wallet thing’ solved and this for me is the perfect balance of holding just enough cards along with a 10k fold of bank notes (the standard and maximum issue for any ATM in India) without totally mis-shaping ones back trouser pocket.

Delhi here we come – efficiently and organised – for you to do your best to throw us the unexpected.

(By the way the practice of taking photos of organised objects laid out is called ‘knolling’)

#minimal #efficientpacking #manbag #folio #Delhi #knolling #IndiGo6e #rayban

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