Note: I updated this post to reflect how my project evolved.
Here is the list of all the stuff I took with me as I left France for a long trip, starting by Thailand. I did however leave the airport with my foldable backpack on my back to avoid looking suspicious. Even with that I was questioned at check in: “you only have this?”. I had to show that I had a returning ticket even though I had the visa already.
I will review some of these items individually. At this point the list has around 30 items, number I will try to reduce with time. The pictures below show everything except my phone, my flip flops and the siwak.
8 items on myself
- A basic T-shirt, 100% cotton. Now replaced by a merino T-shirt.
- A tencel/modal boxer (bought at meundies), very nice to wear and hygienic. Tencel has similar properties as merino wool.
- Basic, cheap cargo trousers. 100% cotton.
- Hippobloo flip flops, 100% natural rubber, made in Thailand.
- An old leather belt. I now avoid buying leather.
- A shemagh bought at a military store.
- Reading glasses. No spare ones.
- A shirt, that I hang with my gourd if it's hot.
Polarized Sunglasses.Lost and never replaced them. A paracord bracelet, King Cobra style.I dropped it.
11 items in my cargo trousers
My cargo trousers have four legs pockets, two classic sides pocket and two in the back. It contains:
- My passport, in a plastic bag to protect from the rain.
In the “secret” pocket. I dropped the secret pocket. Security is overrated.
- My id, always in a different pocket than the passport
- My wallet, made from a kraft bag for the size of Thai bills. I keep coins in my back pocket and avoid them as much as possible.
- A second boxer
- A smartphone. I use a Nexus 5x.
- The smartphone usb-c charger. Bulky… but it could be worse.
- Earphones for music and films. I don't use it often, though.
- A thin cotton handkerchief to avoid disposable ones.
- A thin pen.
- Two small metal mint boxes with medical and useful stuff. The pictures below show the content of each box. (edit: I now use only one box).
A customized linen towel. Replaced by a washing glove, smaller. An extra small linen napkin to avoid disposable ones. I dropped it.
5 items hanging
- A foldable backpack, 20 litres. It's usually clip to my belt.
- A gourd attached with paracord and a carabiner. I use a Klean Kanteen reflect, no plastic, no paint, all inox and a bit of silicon. I love them, especially this model.
- A carabiner with a paracord lanyard that goes in my pocket; on it:
- Hostel keys when needed.
- A multitool knife I bought after landing. It is terrible, from 7/11. Worse scissors ever. Remind me of the movie 127 hours.
- A book, “Walden”, that I slip into my shemagh
Problem with those items:
- I use a sea-to-summit day pack as foldable backpack for shopping or carrying the food. Sadly it is already scratched after only 15 days. I like it but that's the second one that is destroyed, they are just not reliable, Cordura fabric is too fragile. Plus, I'd rather find a natural alternative.
- The Klean Kanteen bottle, while being an awesome gourd is heavier than aluminum or titanium alternative. I just prefer inox for durability, and I can put it on a fire to boil water if needed. Titanium is crazy expensive.
- The shemagh is bulky, but it serves so many purposes I think it is worth it.
- A brief would be less bulky than a boxer, but I just don't find them comfortable. And I'm not ready to go “no underwear.”
Stuff I'm looking for
- An extra small usb-c charger
- Barefoot sandals for running and walking, vegan and petrol free. I will most likely have to make them myself from my flip flop and some hemp rope.
The list of items I carry while travelling without a bag in constantly changing to adapt to my needs but it gives you a good idea on how I did it. The more I travel and the more I tend to get rid of additional things.