In just a few days I'll be hopping the pond to meet up with Annie!! We'll connect in Manchester and travel by train to Newcastle upon Tyne. We're spending two nights there and then will walk across Britain, following Hadrian's Wall, until we reach Bowness on Solway, a small village on the west coast. That will take a week to complete. From there we'll catch our separate trains from Carlisle, Annie returning to New Forest and me carrying on to York for a few days. So excited!!!
This year I'm doing a few things differently. After my trip last year I made a list of things "not to do" and things to change for my next trip. Here are the changes:
- I hated the long LAYOVERS I had last year, specifically at the airport in Iceland where I paid extortionate prices for food/drinks. From now on I'm going to pay a little extra in order to have brief layovers!! Both layovers for this trip are at Heathrow (Toronto to Heathrow then a short flight to Manchester and then the reverse coming home) My first layover is 1 1/2 hours and the second coming home is 2 hours and 15 min.
- Don't wear ANY makeup on flights - my face gets sweaty and it's hard to maintain an oil-free complexion especially when you don't get a chance to remove makeup for 36 or more hours. So I think it'll be easier to just go without anything on my skin at all. Then I can splash water on my face from time to time during flights/train trips etc
- Wear clothing that doesn't have any METAL snaps, buttons etc. - I was frisked on a regular basis because all the metal snaps on my hiking pants kept triggering the scanner. It got so I just "assumed the position!"
- Less/smaller CARRY ON baggage - last year I had a backpack as my carry on and also had a large purse. This year I'm still taking a backpack but my purse is much smaller and goes across the body so my hands are free.
- Last year I ended up wearing the same outer wear zip up athletic top EVERY DAY!! It had two zip up pockets which was just perfect - one pocket for my camera and one pocket for my phone. Usually after an hour or so of walking I would take it off and tie it around my waist. So what I'm getting at is I'm taking less clothing - I know now what works and what doesn't. I think I can reduce the amount of clothing I took last year. (though waiting to see what the forecast will look like later on next week)
- Less STUFF- I took things with me last year that I didn't use such as binoculars. They are awkward to pack and stayed in my suitcase during the whole trip last year.
- CONDENSE - instead of taking several pill containers put 2 weeks supply into one container. Instead of bringing regular-sized hair products squeeze enough for 2 weeks into little bottles. And so on.
So there you have it - my few pearls of wisdom to make this trip a little easier....I hope.