Hong Kong: Skull Island

About a week before I left for Thailand, Hadas started playing a game where every time I said the word “Bangkok” she’d punch me playfully in the groin. This was hilarious for almost both of us and sent me scurrying to Google Maps in search of alternate destinations like Shoulder Rub, Kentucky. Unfortunately, I have the memory of a geriatric porcupine, so I probably said “Bangkok” 400 times over the last week. I started wearing a protective cup to bed.

Anyway, I’m off on another adventure — 16 days in Thailand and Cambodia, which sounds like it should be the title of a movie where Brad Pitt and Brie Larsen lose their kids during a military coup. Luckily, there are no military coups planned for the holidays. I checked BuzzFeed.

I packed light this time. Really light. Rub-your-face-in-it-and-gloat-on-Facebook light. This probably means I forgot important items like my toothbrush or pants, but it’s quite pleasant to be traveling with a half-filled day pack that weighs less than my cat. Here’s a photo of everything that went into my bag. The cat is for scale:

And here’s a photo of the bag with everything in it:

I have five secrets to packing light.

Andrew’s Five Secrets to Packing Light

  1. Carry t-shirts made from 100% merino wool. It’s a magical fabric that is soft, comfortable, doesn’t pick up odors and dries fast. You can wear these t-shirts for multiple days and they don’t get funky. Ironically, actual sheep smell like ass.
  2. Wear quick-drying underwear from Ex-Officio, which also resists odors and can easily be washed in the shower and dried overnight. This is assuming I brought underwear. I should probably check.
  3. Get over the need to wear a different outfit every day. Life is not a Diana Ross concert. Nobody cares (except for Diana Ross).
  4. Go to Southeast Asia, where it’s going to be 90 kajillion degrees every day and I won’t need to wear anything heavier than a Kleenex.
  5. Be a tiny adult human.

Follow these five tips and you can travel indefinitely with just a day pack. Plus, anything you forget you can buy when you get there. I’m pretty sure Thai people have the same general clothing and body parts. I guess I’ll find out when we play the “Bangkok” game at customs.

The first leg of the trip is to San Francisco, which is my virgin flight on Virgin airlines. So far I would describe Virgin as “lightly attended.” I have an entire row to myself, so I put the other two seats up for rent on Airbnb.

The flight is so short that there isn’t even time to watch a movie on the in-seat video player, unless I want to re-watch the first 75 minutes of “Kong: Skull Island” to catch the subtle nuances that I missed the first time. Spoiler alert: Brie Larsen does not lose her kids.

The next flight, from San Francisco to Hong Kong, is an absurd 15 hours in the air. I’m not even sure how that’s physically possible without stopping for gas or a Slurpee halfway there. The longest flight I’ve ever taken is 11 hours, so this promises to be grueling, especially after I’ve watched “Kong: Skull Island” for the seventh time. The flight departs Monday night at 10:30 p.m. and lands in Hong Kong on Wednesday at 6 a.m. I am literally getting no Tuesday this week. Somebody let me know what I miss.