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A few things - cellophane
the story of an invisible girl
renniekins
renniekins
A few things
I filled up my car's gas tank yesterday, and it cost me almost $30. That's a lot, for me! Sheesh gas has gotten expensive....I haven't had to buy it at this current high yet. As I put the cap back on, I thought to myself, "I haven't had to spend this much yet. I've been spoiled."

For some reason, that's a natural response for me, to think: oh lucky me, look how spoiled I am, that $30 seems like a lot! But then I realized: that's completely not true. I haven't paid this much because I intentionally bought a small car. I haven't paid this much because I intentionally moved to a home close to my work. I'm not spoiled, and I shouldn't feel embarrassed for not spending a lot on gas. If anything, I should feel proud. I've made fuel-efficient and environmentally sound choices.

**

Speaking of body odor, a group of us were standing in a cubicle aisle here at work. We were chit-chatting about various things. When our boss left the conversation, I decided that was our clue to break it up and get back to work, so I headed back to my desk.

One of the guys was taking up the whole aisle, leaning on the wall with his hand. I'm short, so I just ducked my head and walked underneath his arm. "Sorry, I was about to move," he told me.

"That's okay, no worries, I don't mind ducking."

He glanced at his arm/armpit with some concern. "It didn't stink or anything, did it?"

"I don't know, because I made certain to hold my breath just in case." Everybody got a good chuckle out of this, but it was true. I never breathe when I'm near somebody's armpit. Why risk it?

**

Speaking of risk, I have been mentally and physically going through my possessions, trying to figure out what I need to bring to Europe, what I'm missing, and so forth. I found a clearance set of panniers at REI that should do well for bicycle luggage, I hope, although I can return them if I find something better. And a light purple "cool wick" (or whatever it's called) sports bra. I want to make sure most of my cycling clothes are the kind that pulls moisture away from the skin and dries quickly. I think I have enough now; I don't need that much since I plan on occasionally washing things out in the hotel sinks (another good reason for quick-drying!).

I'm still unsure of what to wear when not cycling though. In the evenings I'll want to wear nice dinner clothes, but I also have to carry 3-4 days of supplies in my panniers. I think skirts and sundresses maybe -- easy to pack, and acceptable in a wide range of dress codes. Now I just have to see if I like anything I own, and if it still fits or not. (And how wrinkle-proof it is!)

I'm terribly distracted these days, because whenever my mind wanders I start mentally packing, organizing, and rearranging. Hopefully I'll have it all figured out before I go though! And if not? Well, that's what my credit card is for I guess....
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Comments
elizilla From: elizilla Date: April 12th, 2005 09:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
If you want to save money I have some very nice panniers I could loan you for your trip.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 12th, 2005 11:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
ooh, that's an idea! I don't know though, I wonder if having panniers of my own wouldn't be useful in general, for shopping trips and such? Do you use yours much?

Speaking of loans, I still owe you a pair of ski goggles. Thanks so much for the loan, they helped me form my new skiing addiction!

Will you be at Penguicon?
jeffreyab From: jeffreyab Date: April 12th, 2005 09:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
dagibbs and his friend David Weil went on a three week bicycle tour of Europe with no back up.

I would talk to them about what to take.
jeffreyab From: jeffreyab Date: April 12th, 2005 10:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
David Wiel the super cyclist now has an LJ he is theobviousname
theobviousname From: theobviousname Date: April 13th, 2005 12:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hi! I'm not sure I can live up to the intro, but if there are any questions I can answer I'd be glad to help.

Hah, I'm envious of you - I had so much fun cycling in Europe...
encorecrazay From: encorecrazay Date: April 12th, 2005 10:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Don't forget some soap for your clothes and a clothesline to hang them in your bathroom after washing. I recommend Campsuds, works well in hot & cold water, and it's for clothes, dishes, your body, .. and biodegradable. Most outdoor and travel stores will have these things. A few gallon ziplock bags are real handy for packing things, squeeze the air out to save space and they'll keep things dry if you get hit by rain.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 12th, 2005 11:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Already picked up some Woolite, which was recommended to me by the bike people. Perhaps a clothesline would be in order, and you're right I definitely need to get some ziplock bags!
(Deleted comment)
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 12th, 2005 11:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hm, I've heard that Canadians always wear maple leaf patches on their backpacks and such. I haven't been clear on why: is that so they won't be mistaken for Americans? Or just so they'll recognize one another?

Wait, are you recommending that I upgrade to Icelandic tchotchkes, or go biking in Iceland? I don't think the second is possible, since I've already reserved this trip. I suppose I could research what the Iceland flag looks like though! That'll confuse everyone for sure.
jeffreyab From: jeffreyab Date: April 12th, 2005 11:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
No its Americans that wear the Canadian flag so people won't know they are Americans and disparage them.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 12th, 2005 11:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've been learning "O Canada" en Francais, and I'm pretty good at it but I don't remember all the words yet without the lyrics in front of me.
cannibal From: cannibal Date: April 13th, 2005 12:02 am (UTC) (Link)
What, you don't need panniers? You can look at mine anyway....

I noticed that gas is going down again, http://detroitgasprices.com has the one at Warren & Greenfield as 2.09 a gallon. Are you going to start riding your bike to work?
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 14th, 2005 02:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well I grabbed them because they were on clearance and the only ones left. L might keep them, even if I don't. I'd still like to take a look at your panniers if I may.

I've thought about riding to work, it would be a cool idea, but.... I dunno. Crazy rush-hour drivers, lack or shower facilities, and distance combined with difficulty getting up in the morning have stopped me from trying it so far.
kevinnickerson From: kevinnickerson Date: April 13th, 2005 01:05 am (UTC) (Link)
"Hopefully I'll have it all figured out before I go though!"

Ah, and when is this?
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 14th, 2005 02:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
May 5 -- which means that, alas, I'll have to miss smegs.
bjorng From: bjorng Date: April 13th, 2005 05:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
Two bucks a gallon is pretty cheap, really, on the global market. Twenty years ago gas was already over a dollar a liter in Sweden. Now it's about $1.50 a liter. (Two-thirds of that is tax.)

Making sound environmental choices is both very considerate of you, and in this case very economical too!
mrdisco99 From: mrdisco99 Date: April 13th, 2005 06:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm not spoiled, and I shouldn't feel embarrassed for not spending a lot on gas. If anything, I should feel proud. I've made fuel-efficient and environmentally sound choices.

If only more people would figure that out... we might have fewer big slow SUV deathtraps wasting gas and space, serving as gauche trophies of wealth and apathy, and constantly GETTING IN MY FUCKING WAY.

*sigh*

I feel very strongly about that.
hannunvaakuna From: hannunvaakuna Date: April 13th, 2005 08:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
folks that whine about SUV drivers and their choices are almost as annoying as the SUV drivers themselves.
theobviousname From: theobviousname Date: April 14th, 2005 02:07 pm (UTC) (Link)

A couple of thoughts.

I don't want to sound like a know-it-all ('cuz I don't), so I won't ramble.

Two things I'd wish I'd taken more of with me to Europe: anti-histamines (or equivalent), and sunscreen. Ignore the first if you don't have allergies, but if you do, you're going to be outdoors, in the country, a lot, in a place where you probably don't know what you'll react to. I found that in early May half the trees in Provence were dropping fuzzy stuff all over the roads. Very pretty, but it made my eyes itch. As for sunscreen, my experience was that they have it, but putting on European (well, French and German) sunscreen is like applying eau-de-toilette over your entire body. (If you have scent allergies, beware. Take all your cleansers with you.)

Otherwise... Well, I don't know a lot about your plans for your trip, but the other thing that occurs to me is, if you're planning on doing tourist things, make sure you have a sweater or decent jacket to put over a sundress or sleeveless top if you're going to be visiting churches.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: April 14th, 2005 09:53 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: A couple of thoughts.

Anti-histimines! Not something I'd thought of, but a great idea. Sunscreen is on my virtual list (which I should turn into a real list, come to think of it), but it's an excellent reminder.

Oooh, good point, churches can be quite chilly!
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