A great trip starts with good preparation..
I don’t mean planning your day to day schedule or booking all your accommodations up front.. No not all, I actually prefer just taking everything as it comes.. What I do mean is preparing your equipment: what do you want or need to bring, do you have it, or do you need to buy it?
Let’s be honest: the clothes you bring are of no concern whatsoever.
Just jump into your closet, pick out something from every pile, and add it to your bag.. You’ll be set in the clothes department. But especially the ‘high impact items’ such as your backpack, hiking boots, all-weather jacket, camera and other electronic equipment require proper attention.
In our current digital era it’s become normal to buy literally everything online.
But are you sure you’ll get the proper stuff by just browsing through options online and comparing them based on other people’s reviews? I’m not convinced. Again, if it’s just for the basics, I have no objection to buying online.. But your high impact items are way too important to just buy ‘off the rack’.
Recently I had to replace some of these high impact items: a backpack, camera and hiking boots. In all 3 cases I had a few wishes or demands, but not nearly enough to be able to make a decision. And apparently, after visiting a store, I found out that I didn’t know enough to buy it without some expert advice!
First the backpack: you’d think that buying any backpack is fine, as long as it is big enough for you to store all your stuff in.. Well, apparently not.. Not that I’d want a huge backpack because I’d topple over when wearing it, but the way it fits to your back seems to make a big difference, as well as all the different compartments you want to use.
The camera shop actually had hundreds of different cameras.. I wouldn’t know where to begin, except that I didn’t want a camera with a lot of loose parts that I could wreck or get sand in.. The guy at the shore only needed 45 minutes to help me pick out 1 camera that I couldn’t demolish too easily and that would still have all the options I need to take cool pictures 🙂
And then yesterday I went to get me a new pair of hiking boots.. For the first time ever, someone told me that apparently I have slender feet.. Wow, what do you do with that information? (And is it a compliment??) So in the entire store, there were only 3 types of female hiking boots that would fit me.. 3! Imagine if I’d gone online to randomly choose a pair of boots.. I would have had to return about 50 pairs before finally finding the right one, because last I checked, it didn’t mention being designed for ‘slender feet’ in the product specifications.. Another 45 minutes in a store with an excellent result!
So yes, we are living in a digital age, and no, I’m not trying to sound old and outdated at all.. I’m just trying to make the point that we as consumers don’t know everything about anything and internet is too big to inform you about it all.. So for specific needs, it might just be better to talk to an expert, at a store, to find what you didn’t know you were looking for!
Thanks to the Kampeermarkt, Bever and Cityfoto for helping me out!
By the way: check out the picture of my cool new boots taken with my cool new camera 🙂