Stuff I Use


Spilled a cup of green tea near my Macbook. One drop slipped under the keyboard cover. Screwed up the keyboard. Still works with an external keyboard. Decided to by new Macbook Air 13″. A beautiful machine. Very light. Working on cutting down on my travelling weight. Making small inroads. Stopped carrying my external speakers.

iPod Touch. My little wonder. Can do so much with it! Goes everywhere with me. Lots of apps. Use it to study Japanese, read books (yes, like a small paperback) and much more. Syncs with my computer through the cloud. The notes and reminders programs are great.

Camera- Nikon Great camera. Light weight. Only problem is the need for a special battery charge that weighs a ton. Ah, well.

Zoom H2 digital flash recorder. Small, reliable, affordable. Bought it for recording my shakuhachi lessons. Use it as an external mic for my lesson by skype. Still better than the mic in my Air.

Have a dumb phone that I get a local sim card for when I’m away from Oz. Probably get an iPhone one of these days. My iPod Touch does most of what an iPhone does. I’ve even used it as a phone with Skype on the Amtrak train in California.

Camping/Travel Gear

Poncho-tarp. Light weight.

Sleeping Bag- My old standby down North Face down three season bag that I bought I don’t know how long ago. I have a nice silk liner for it. Purchase a new -25 C bag for trek in 2012. Was on sale, so, price was right but a bit of overkill. Still, it came in handy as a duvet as well as a sleeping bag.

REI Ultralight Daypack. Use it every day.

For travelling, I also have a PacSafe shoulder bag. Slash proof and good for organising stuff.

Osprey Porter 46, carry-on backpack. Doesn’t have wheels but that saves weight.


Travel Clothing

Goretex jacket. Polar fleece vest. Two long sleeve synthetic “t-shirts”. One medium, one light weight. To keep the arms covered. They wash and dry easily and quickly.

Two pairs of convertible pants with zip off legs. They may not be fashionable but they work great.


1. My trusty Tilly. All cotton. large brim wider at the back. I’ve had it for about five years. Still in great condition. I wear it a lot!

2. An orange Outdoor Research baseball style cap. Very light weight. Take up no space. Not as good cover as the Tilly but easier to transport. Used on 2012-13 trip. Worked well enough. Love my Tilly. Will be a toss whether to take it next time I travel:-(


1. Bought a pair of Keen low top hiking boots in 2012. Like the large toe space. Worked wonderfully. Light weight and easy to slip on and off in countries like Japan where you don’t wear your shoes indoors and it gets cold enough at times to make sandals very uncomfortable.

2. Teva sandals. A bit bulky but they work great and have good arch support. I discovered recently through pain and a visit to the foot doctor that I have to have arch support.

3. Chinese tai chi style shoes. Didn’t take them with me on my 2012-13 trip and regretted.


For flying, I use one good sized suitcase and my backpack carry-on. I have found that this is the easiest and most sturdy arrangement. I carried around a travel pack for years and almost never used it as a backpack. I now use taxis or trains. I have my large suitcase delivered in Japan. I deviated from this for 2012-13 trip and was very sorry.

Home stuff –

African woven basket- got it as much for it’s beauty as it’s utility. I discovered that having a flat bottom, I am able to spread out the different things at the growers market easily. In bags, things tend to get jumbled and on top of each other.

EZ Sport Recumbent Bicycle- Enjoying it more and more. Good for riding around Byron Bay area. Wish there were more sunny days this year.


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