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Tag Archives: Students in Travel

Words to Go

Well, I’m still not quite ready with that conference report; for one thing, I have a Destinations test tomorrow that I’m studying for, and you would not believe how difficult it is to keep all of these attractions straight – the Scandinavian countries just might be my downfall.

I did want to report in on a travel aid that I brought with me for the first time, though. Anyone who knows me, knows – I’m a reader. At any given time, we’re housing hundreds of books. So just think about what a challenge that presents when it’s time to hit the road! I mean, what’s a road trip, flight, train ride or stay-away without reading material?

So this time, I brought the Kindle. It’s borrowed, but oh, what a lovely little treat it has turned out to be! It fit neatly in the side pocket of my briefcase/bag and weighs almost nothing. On the subway and bus, I could just pop it out, read for a while, and pop it back into the bag without even worrying about turning it off, thanks to the automatic sleep mode. No losing my page, no trying to turn pages with my mittens on, I could even read one-handed!

So, instead of choosing my travel reads by weight, as I’ve been known to do, I was able to get a third of the way through Stephen King’s new novel – 840 pages in hardback, light as a feather on Kindle.

Two of the daughters have Kindles (who did you think I borrowed from?) and they’ve both used them while travelling. Middle daughter said it was especially nice to have access to her travel guides while moving around Europe. And Older daughter even figured out how to email from hers.

I’d never suggest that ereaders should replace books entirely. But if you’re on the move a lot, and also read a lot, they may just be the perfect way to mesh those two past-times.

Do you use an eReader? How has it changed your travel experience?

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Homeward bound

Interesting day at the Students in Travel conference – lots to think about and consider. Now I’m enjoying the wifi on the train and the fact that I’m off my feet after  long day with lots of walking and standing. Via Rail is having a special this month on their travel mug – buy it for $8 and get free refills all of November. So that’s what I did on the way up yesterday.

Promise to expound on the conference once I’ve processed it all. For now, it’s just nice to be going home.

Travelling light

When I was a little girl, I used to spend two weeks at camp every summer. My mother would let me pack my own suitcase; then, the night before departure, I’d have to drag it out into the dining room for inspection. Whereupon, my mother would add all the things I hadn’t thought of, and any extras she believed I would need. (she was usually right) The end result was that my suitcase always seemed to contain far more than I would need for 13 nights away, and it was full full full.

You would think that after years of cramming a family of five – and their luggage – into a minivan for vacations, that I’d be an expert reducing my luggage to its essentials.

You would think, but you’d be wrong. All those folks that were so upset about airlines charging for checked bags? Yeah, I was one of them. This, in spite of the fact that I usually get where I’m going, use only half of what I brought, and always swear that NEXT TIME it’ll be different.

I’m off to Toronto for the Students in Travel Conference tomorrow; I’ll be away from home a total of 39 hours. Theoretically, I need what I’m wearing tomorrow, something to sleep in, what I’m wearing for the conference on Tuesday, and that’s about it. Sounds easy, right?

Ha!

First, what am I wearing on the train? The train is often cold; I’ll need layers. Plus, things to entertain me, like the laptop, Kindle, etc. And train snacks. At the other end, I’ll be staying with a friend, but I need to use the TTC to get there; hence, I will need my coat, mittens, and possibly a hat. And my umbrella.

I have to decide now what I’m wearing to the conference on Tuesday. Not too big a deal, but what if I change my mind? What if I spill something on my shirt, or something rips? Will the convention centre be blazing hot, or freezing cold? And then there’s the fact that everything I’m not wearing will have to go to the conference with me – on the bus – because I’m leaving on the train again right after. Plus, I’ll want to make sure that whatever I’m wearing will also be comfortable train attire. And the train is often cold, etc.

The inability to travel light isn’t the only thing that’s stopped me from being a world traveller yet, but I have the feeling it’s something I’m going to need to get a handle on.

What are your favourite tips for travelling light?