Living out of 10 packs takes some adjusting. As a matter of fact, it’s downright annoying. Take clothes for example. Aside from changing my sweat drenched biking shorts and shirt every day, I feel like it’s gotten so hard to find anything else that I’ve taken to wearing the same faded purple Eddie Bauer skort and insect repellent shirt for the past eight days. After we arrive at our hotel rooms, shower, and take a brief nap, it just seems like too much work to dress for dinner.
The problem with wearing the same skort for R&R every day is that it never gets into the laundry pile. My bike clothes and sweat rags are getting laundered but my favorite purple skort- favorite because it’s got lots of pockets, it’s biker friendly and it makes my legs look skinny – has got grease stains from my failed attempts at using chop sticks with fried chicken feet, tiny grains of rice dripped in soy sauce, and won ton noodle soup. In fact, I look like a middle school student trying to convince his teacher that his parents are too poor to afford more than one school uniform and that’s why her skirt is so dirty. (Yes, I’ve heard this excuse before as a teacher.)
But back to organizing my packs or as bikers like to call them – panniers.. After 8 days I think I’ve got a system. I’ve got clothes in stuff sacks categorized by use, work, leisure and foundations. I’ve got electronics chargers (lots of them) stuffed into a convenient blue bag, and I’ve balanced the panniers with tools on the left side and laptop on the right.
I can now pack up and start pedaling in 15 minutes flat. That’s down from the hour and fifteen minutes at the start. And to celebrate my new found efficiency and confidence, I’ve even put on a clean shirt and pants for tonight’s dining and sightseeing in Hat Yai, Thailand. Now I’d call that organized.