I'm done! Well, almost. I still need to pack my carry on. But, with only two large bags and a backpack, I'm feeling pretty good about this. Now, some of you may look at the pictures and wonder, "Pretty good?!?! Look how big those bags are! Why did you pack so much, Kate?" I agree. I packed a lot, but let me justify myself below.
First, I have traveled a lengthier trip before, but it was to European cities and hotels, so I had sinks, laundrymats, cute mini toiletries, and really expensive tourist shops at my disposal. In this case, I'll be gone for over three weeks with limited access to water for bathing and laundry and no Amazon Prime deliveries. Therefore, as a courtesy to the olfactory sense of any person that will be within a five-foot radius of me during the next three weeks, I have packed multiples of almost everything. You're welcome future random strangers, roommate(s), and coworkers.
Second, I like to be prepared. I even made a Google doc checklist. It was, maybe unsurprisingly after reading this, a page long with two columns and small font. But, I can't imagine a more disappointing experience than arriving at Toolik after eight to ten hours of riding in a car, only to find that I forgot to pack socks. Three weeks without more than one pair of socks isn't a minor inconvenience. It's a crisis. And one that I'd like to avoid.
So, judgers may be judging (I'm looking at you supercritical lady in line behind me at the airport to check in my bags tomorrow), but at least I'll have enough socks for my expedition...and maybe the apocalypse.
Side note: I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce my classroom mascot, Kelvin the porg. I teach chemistry so comment below for extra credit points if you know where the name, Kelvin, came from and double points if you can also explain how the porg character came about in Star Wars! Kelvin will be traveling with me and helping me with my work in the field and research in the lab, so keep a lookout for him! Also, he may be my tactic to avoid the uncomfortably-long airplane conversation because I'll start talking to him if the person next to me won't leave me alone. ("Why yes over-sharing frequent-flyer, your landlord is mistaken. Twenty-two cats seem like a perfectly reasonable number of cats to have in your one-bedroom apartment. What do you think, Kelvin?").