Our remote team had an online social hour today that I hosted. We used to do a freewrite when I first joined the team (where everyone writes for 30 minutes then shares), so I decided to reboot that with this prompt:
What non-standard items do you always travel with?
Of course I have the regular stuff like Advil and my computer, but here are the things I travel with that I think are non-standard:
- This is electrolyte drink mix powder. I am chronically dehydrated, even moreso when I’m away from home and don’t have the constant reminder of a water bottle on my desk, so I drink one of these every morning when I’m traveling to stay hydrated.
- I go with either the Orange or Grapefruit.
- Instant Coffee
- Airport coffee, hotel coffee, and airplane coffee is terrible. I used to bring a hand grinder and AeroPress, but now instant coffee is much better than it used to be.
- I tend to buy stuff from Black and White Coffee Roasters. It has all been excellent.
- Sometimes I get Intelligentsia’s Black Cat espresso, too.
- Swimmer’s Ear drops
- I get ear infections from water in my ears, and I tend to swim more when traveling than at home. So I keep these drops in my travel bag.
- Watch battery tool
- Without fail, my watch battery dies when I’m not at home, so the little tool I need to replace it lives in my backpack.
- Packable rain jacket
- I keep a packable rain jacket in my backpack at all times. I don’t like umbrellas, but don’t like getting caught in the rain, either.
- I have one from Columbia that I bought off the discount rack at Dick’s Sporting Goods 10 years ago.
- Shout wipes
- Nothing worse than spilling coffee on your shirt first thing in the morning and having to go to a bunch of meetings like that. Shout wipes are an essential part of my backpack.
- NYTimes Mini Crossword book
- These are fun, mini versions of the NYTimes crosswords collected in a book. Amanda and I have passed a lot of time in airports, on airplanes, on trains, and on ferries doing these mini crosswords together. This is one of those things that is better in the physical format than on the phone, IMO.
If I’m traveling by car for more than an hour:
- Small tool kit
- Multi-bit screwdriver
- Ratchet set
- Zip ties
- Duct tape
- Super glue
- Utility knife
- AC recharger
- Ever been on a roadtrip and the AC stops working? It is easy to recharge, so I keep one in the car.
- Beach towel
- To be honest, this mostly gets used at the playground to wipe off wet slides that Charlie wants to go down, but it is also useful for cleaning up spills, etc.
- Picnic blanket
- Never know when you need to hang out for a little while outside. Chilling at a playground, impromptu meals outside, sitting on the beach, etc.
- We have a Yeti Lowlands blanket. Soft on one side and canvas (waterproof) on the other.
- Regular blanket
- We keep a fleece blanket in the car. It can double as a picnic blanket if needed, but nice to be able to have a blanket if you get stuck or are just outside and it gets chilly. Or if someone wants to take a nap on a long drive.
- Furniture blanket
- Useful to kneel on if you need to change a tire, also useful to throw down to protect your seats if you need to move something.
- Backup clothes
- Sometimes toddlers puke on themselves or you. Or they jump in mud and then get it on you. Backup clothes are essential for everyone in the car.
- Tourniquet/bleeding control kit
Dear reader, what non-standard items do you always travel with? Write your post and drop it in the comments.