Packing to leave the country for a month: Guess what I'm forgetting

mr emilyforce and I are going to the Middle East for a month, starting Monday. I have started packing.

I have remembered some basic items, such as underwear, a toothbrush, and walking shoes.

I have remembered some common comfort items, such as earplugs, eyeshades, and an inflatable neck pillow.

I have remembered some items necessary for the survival of a Delicate Flower Princess such as myself, including blister plasters, anti-chafing powder, and a hangnail nipper.

What am I forgetting?

Photocopies off your passport to go in each piece of luggage?

or is this some sort of game that I’m being whooshed on?

Ding ding ding! First point to Enright3!I remembered about this a couple of weeks ago – I have a scan of the PP I should print out copies of – but then forgot until now. Thank you!

No, you’re spot on.

A small bottle of the OTC painkiller/antihistamine/decongestants of your choice. Finding simple medications in an unfamiliar land with a language barrier when you’re not feeling your best can be…daunting. You may find new an unusual things to be allergic to in a different climate.

Do you have your female supplies? Diva Cup/pads/tampons, etc. Don’t count on being able to buy what you’re used to.

Go pack one more pair of good socks. Yes, I know you think you packed enough socks. You didn’t. :wink:

Packed, packed, and packed! AAAAND all my prescriptions but one that I have to go get, AND all the paperwork that goes with 'em.

Packed! Though I use tampons and I’m not choosy about which kind.

Oh, all right… what are you, my mom? Seriously, though, foot comfort is a huge gigantic issue for me and my lousy mismatched feet, so I’ve got lots and lots of socks already: seven pairs each of silk liner socks and cashmere outer socks (plus four pairs of cotton socks just in case it’s unseasonably warm). So now I will pack EIGHT. Dinglet. :wink:

My personal acronym for what’s really important – PMT – passport money tickets. Everything else is jam.

:smiley: I’m the unofficial Doper Mom - didn’t you get the memo?

No, seriously, I’ve just done enough backpacking/camping/not-staying-at-4 star-hotels kind of vacationing to never again underestimate the importance of comfortable feet and a clean pair of dry socks! Ask me about my whole-sole blisters in Bali sometime. Or my oh-my-god-what-altitude-is-this edema and swollen feet in Oaxaca. Or the boots I had to pitch in Ireland after an ill advised tromp through a cow field. (Really, there was no saving them, and I’m a cheap bastard.) Feet seem to be my weakest link when traveling.

Clearly, you are not a Delicate Flower Princess. :stuck_out_tongue:

A three-pack of disposable burqas?

WhyNot, preach it. I almost killed mr emilyforce by insisting on going shoe-shopping in London when we were there – the shoes I’d brought were giving me bloody (as in, with actual blood oozing out, not as in British expletive) blisters. The idea of WASTING PRECIOUS TIME on MERE SHOPPING in LONDON when we could be going to see or do something IMPORTANT about gave him an aneurism. We spent all of two hours finding me some lovely Ecco sneakers, which just last month fell completely apart after six years of blister-free service. :frowning:

The Middle East is a big place, so it would help to know a bit about where you intend to go. Packing for a trip to Mashad, Iran in winter will be very different from a trip to Dubai for example. Most places you can buy most anything, but brands will be limited in some places. In Syria, Iran and Yemen, access to ATMs may well be limited, whereas in the Gulf they are everywhere.

I just got back from Jordan last night so if you are going there I can provide some up-to-the-minute details.

Ha ha. We’re going to Jordan, where they don’t wear burqas. I am packing loose and non-revealing clothes in general, but most of my wardrobe is like that anyway. I’m also taking a headscarf – not for Jordan, but for Jerusalem, where we’ll be for a couple of days, in case we want to go inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Those crazy repressive Christians!

Jerusalem and environs for a few days, then various places in Jordan, including Amman, Irbid, Petra, etc. We expect the weather to be mostly cool and possibly rainy. Apparently good insulation in buildings is not de rigeur around there, so I’m planning for cold nights even indoors.

Great – I’d love to hear them! mr emilyforce was in Jordan Oct 07 - June 08, doing research for his PhD, so we’re not going blindly.

I always travel with an emergency dental repair kit. I bought it at the drugstore, it contains some temp filling material and a small bottle of local anesthetic.

Breaking a filling when you are out of town can be a real pain, both literally and figuratively.

Oh I tend to pack for comfort and every possible emergency too. I just use the acronym to dial down my stress when I’m worriting over the one crucial thing I may have forgotten.

Good one! I’ll add it to my drugstore list. I have one somewhere in a box or a closet, I’m sure, but I’m also sure it’s years past whatever expiration date it might have.

I don’t know whether “worriting” is a typo or a coinage, but I love it and am appropriating it. And you’re absolutely right.

My justification for worriting at all is that I get migraines; I want to manage as many triggers as possible, and minor discomforts can add up.

Jordan has gotten quite expensive recently - the prices in your guidebook will likely be wrong by a wide margin… e.g. often the prices are double those listed in the latest Lonely Planet book. For hotels it is only up by 40% or so, but fuel has risen 10x in the past 6-12 months in the country.

In Jordan, if you are half-way fit, do not miss the hike up Wadi-Mujib near the Dead Sea. You walk for about an hour in a stream of water (upstream going in), through a narrow gorge. On average it is about 12-18" deep, and the gorge is perhaps 40-50 feet wide and 200 feet deep. Amazing. It was the highlight of my trip.

If you plan to travel to other Middle Eastern countries, cross to Israel at the King Hussein bridge and back the same way - ask the Israelis to not stamp your passport (they might still do so).

Stay in Madaba instead of Amman - it is cheaper, less polluted and closer to the sites along the Dead Sea.

Sunscreen and bug spray. Every time I’m out of the country I seem to forget one or the other and they seem to be way too expensive every time.

Bring some Purell or other gel-like hand sanitizer. It is just starting to get cool. Yesterday morning in Madaba it was cool enough for a sweatshirt but the day before on the Dead Sea highway it was still very warm. If you are planning to get around by hired car, just be prepared for much higher costs… Syria is still cheap, but Jordan is most certainly not.