1 Africa Calling | Traveling Light Blog by Travel Writer Colleen Friesen

Africa Calling


Hello Kitty - Colleen Friesen

Hello Kitty – Colleen Friesen


It’s confirmed! I’m off to South Africa on the 12th of this month. I haven’t received my final itinerary yet, but I know we end with a safari and spend some time in Cape Town and Durban. These are all good things…

But could someone please explain why, when it comes to packing, every single trip I take seems like the first time?

I have started, and discarded, a ridiculous number of different packing lists to alleviate this issue. But I think the problem is that every trip is completely different. How can there possibly be a universal list?

It’s kind of like those multiple choice questions I struggled with in elementary school; I was never able to definitely pick just one. It always seemed like a case could be made for any answer. I remember the eraser on my pencil snapping off more than once, as I energetically rubbed and replaced and rubbed and recircled, the correct answer.

My ten-year old self’s angst would be at full throttle in my effort to figure out how there could possibly be only one solution (come to think of it, it’s kind of how I feel about certainty on any topic, especially religion). But surely I am digressing more than usual…

As far as packing, it depends on whether I’m hiking up a Welsh trail or sipping Cosmopolitans in Manchester. Clearly one cannot wear the same outfit to those events, although in my effort to Traveling Light, I have been known to push the accepted dress code a little.

It sounds like this trip will be a little of everything…a safari, some urban experiences, and whatever else South Africa Tourism has planned.┬áIt is fall over there and rapidly approaching winter. This means warm days with some random torrential rain and some chilly gloves-required mornings and nights.

Giraffes - Colleen Friesen

Look Up – Colleen Friesen

I’ll never escape my multiplicity approach; there are so many right answers and so many right outfits, but only one carry-on bag (metaphor alert! sounds suspiciously like LIFE).

‘Smart casual’ is suggested for some of the nicer restaurants…

Perhaps long johns and high heels?

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5 Responses
  1. Barbara K Williams says:

    Have a great time. It can be very cold and there is no central heat. So if you don’t have enough warm clothes….buy some more! Xoxoxo

  2. Colleen Friesen says:

    Thanks for permission to do some shopping Babs! Not sure how much spare time I’ll have but I’ll think of you if there are any extra purchases :)
    My plan is to bring some thin layers and a windbreaker and hope for the best.

  3. Laurie Beeman says:

    Wow, this is an incredible adventure,
    Can’t wait to live vicariously through you!
    Have you been before?

  4. Colleen Friesen says:

    Yes Laurie, this is going to be fabulous! I have been to South Africa before, but it was an overland camping trip with backpacks and gritty cots and I LOVED it, but I think this is going to be a much different version :)

  5. Lesley Peterson says:

    From crazy global weather changes to my own fluctuating inner thermostat, there’s no planning to my packing anymore. I throw in what I can and make do. Can’t wait for your posts from South Africa–have a super trip!

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