Every holiday I have a sort of balloon debate as I try to limit the weight of my suitcase in the vain hope it doesn't drag my arm off. It's futile, since my suitcase is getting heavier every time I go away; I'm not sure why this is. Anyway this post is about items I have been taking but which I no longer need to take. These are in no particular order, some logical, some a teensy bit sad.
- Extra swimming trunks. Why should I bother? I swim addictively, but why have more than one pair? The days of taking three pairs are over, I have resolved.
- Short wave radio. I have a state of the art Roberts with digital tuning to find the world service, but in the ritzier hotels the availability of wifi means you can get any station in far better quality provided you have a lappie. The hotel here in Hong Kong plays you BBC Five Live from the room phone. Actually the hendo-jury is still out on this one. Roughing it in Turkey may still require a sw radio. But now the BBC have turned off the signal in that region, I think. So perhaps my pride and joy receiver is redundant.
- Trainers. I'm not going jogging in Hong Kong, I need to face this.
- Tee shirts. I always buy at least five of the silliest from the dodgiest market stalls in the region. So why pack five from home? C'est inutile.
- Suits. See Tee shirts. Actually sense prevailed on this latest trip, and I didn't pack one since even I knew taking lounge suits to Vietnam is taking coals to Newcastle.
- Scrabble set. I have a lovely travel set from Hasbro, the American owners of the franchise. I bought it in New Orleans, and it boasts a lovely linen case with a pocket for the scorecards and a well made bag for the little tiles, one of which I lost down the gap in a section of decking at a beach near Barcelona. On reflection, if it's not a 'travelling' kind of trip it may still make the cut, otherwise it's the computer version (which has the advantage of it being impossible to lose a tile, but the disadvantage of needing recharging).
- Loadsabooks. I always grab six, forgetting that I can often buy one later, or failing this, steal one from Ms T. These are the big culprits in weight terms. I once took a book called Cobra 2 on holiday which is a six hundred page analysis of the second Gulf War. It was in hardback! I pay the price for my reading habit in excess baggage charges.
- Mobile phone. It never ever rings yet I carry it religiously. I suppose I'm stuck with it now since I'm paranoid some emergency will occur. But the only emergency that's occurred so far on my travels is, you've guessed it, the loss of my mobile on the back seat of a taxi in Bangkok.