So you want to schlep across an ocean for a holiday… where do you even start? Your favorite Nomadic Troglodyte is here to help with helpful tips and helpful advice and… just… HELP!


Plan for the worst.

Prepare for the best.

Ahem, allow me to expand. Make a list of the things you’ll need and don’t pack anything else. Really, do you need your kindle, laptop, journal, five novels, sketchbook, and your planner? This is ten days, not six months. Calm down. Do you need all those fancy shirts which require different under-gear? You’re going camping. Calm down. Simplify your wardrobe, extras, and makeup wherever you can, but pack for comfort if possible. If you’re going to a series of black-tie events, you can’t just pack yoga pants. With my trip to Scotland, I wanted to be able to pack everything in a single backpack and travel purse.

However, this may be where some extra purchasing comes in handy. If you can find a pair of travel pants that look like slacks, pull up into capris, have usable pockets, dry quickly, and possess the wide stretch band of yoga pants… congratulations. You have won the lottery. These are my winning ticket right here:

Mountain Hardwear Dynama Pants - Women's Black Medium Regular

Make sure you have emergency money, emergency food, emergency contacts, and an updated will. Because you really never know what’s going to happen. Keep the emergency numbers for taxies and police in a nearby journal or a note on your phone. Know your route, know the dangers, and prepare for bad weather, bad drivers, and bad luck.

I’d like to have a little side note here. My brother, sister-in-law, and I were on a fishing trip in a cellphone dead zone. In a complete fluke accident, the keys got locked in the car after we had all put our purses and fishing gear in the car but hadn’t gotten in ourselves. There were other fishers and drivers about, so we were able to beg a ride into town where we called who we needed to call and could walk to a locksmith’s. But there was a fair amount of waiting required. My sister-in-law and I chatted and laughed and we all cracked jokes with each other and enjoyed a truly beautiful Colorado afternoon (albeit, one a bit longer than we were planning). When we were nearly home, my brother made a point of thanking us both… saying that the ordeal would have been very trying indeed had we not behaved with such well-tempered grace.

So when something goes wrong, if your day is ‘ruined’ by bad luck… sometimes smelling the roses is just the ticket. It might not fix the mistake, but it will sure make the mistake less horrible.

You’ve packed your raincoat and your multi-purpose pants. You have purchased your tickets and jotted down all the numbers and addresses you need. Now, get ready for fun. If you’ve put the details in their place, it’s time to abandon that sense of worry and seize that sense of wonder! What good is a holiday if it isn’t a time to run in circles laughing because you made it outside your comfort zone?

Since I am on the other side of an ocean while this posts, I’m going to promise a few more details about travel preparation and exploration in the upcoming weeks.

For all of my readers in all of their travels… bonne voyage!