Packing for China 2013

This is the second post about packing. I have already posted about packing in 2011 but as you will find out I did bail out of China after 6  months or so because of various reasons – which you can read about in the book.

This then is a blog post from 2013 – I will add commentary about the contents of my packing – such as was it worth it or not.

I’ve started to pack for China. It seems I’ve had a stroke of good luck in that my airline ticket bought online via  www.airexpress.co.uk  gives me 30 kilos of checked in baggage as oppose to the 20 kilo the airline advertise. I have checked this with the agent and have had an email from them confirming it, I will be ringing Cathay Pacific tomorrow to double check. This is simply because if I end up 10 kilos overweight I’ll be charged $600 excess baggage!

Anyway the 30 kilos gives me a bit more scope than the 20 kilos I had to pack last time.

In 2011 this was pretty much my final packing list:
Running shoes – needed
Black shoes for work – needed
Running shorts – Lycra – you can buy shorts here
Running shirt – long sleeves – you can buy shirts here
Fred  Perry Polo Shirt – didn’t wear too much
Waxed type Jacket – still using it
Black and White Kefeya Scarf – not used so much
Casual Rugby style shirts x 2 – 1long sleeve and 1 short sleeve – long sleeve good for winter.
Track suit bottoms  – new and thick and warm x1 – needed to lounge around in.
University of Plymouth Hoodie – parting gift from my job – I asked for it, and they are warm and good quality – good for the winter.
Large Bath sheet – smaller ones can be purchased in China but not bath sheets – You can buy decent sized towels in the supermarkets.
1 pair black jeans – you can buy jeans here I’m a 36/38 inch waist no problems
1 pair Khaki Chinos – as above
4 cotton shirts –  for work etc – Shirts are a problem the biggest chinese size XXL is too tight for me. Im usually an XL in the UK.
2 x thermal vests and 2 x thermal long johns – I’m told that there is no heating in Chinese schools – my school is OK but yours might not be – I wear the vests more often than the long johns.
6 pairs underpants (M&S of course) – I buy underpants in Miniso a sort of Japanese £1 shop.
10 pairs of socks (1 pair a month huh?) – socks – you can buy socks
1 woolly hat (courtesy of Matilda, she bought it in Marrakesh)
1 woolly bobble hat – you can buy hats
1 pair thick socks – useful.
Running trousers (Lycra) not to useful.

That’s it in terms of clothes

Also in the suitcase is:

A bag with 6 underarm deodorants – reduced from 10 – apparently you cant get deodorant in China!  – You can get deodorant but its few and far between and sometimes expensive. I still bring it.

Plus 5 small bottles of shaving oil. – I buy a big bottle off eBay.

Various prescription medicines, 3 Ventolin and 3 of the steroid puffers.  3 packs of Imodium (just in case!), about 12 of my migraine drugs (but hopefully will not need) – Yes bring your prescription drugs.  From this list I can buy ventolin over the counter. Haven’t seen Imodium (go to the £1 shop) and a big NO to my migraine drugs.

cliploc bags x 2 boxes for teacher in china. 2 x large bars of chocolate requested by teacher in china.

Swiss Army penknife. – Useful anywhere. It has a corkscrew, a bottle opener and a tin opener (Tin openers are hard to find in China – bring one)

At the moment my bag is pushing about 23 kilos and is looking pretty full with all this stuff (not including the dog, she’s going on her own flight, i’m couriering her stuff)

My stuff for China
So in no particular order here we go again: – This is my 2013 list.
Running shoes _ yes
Black shoes for work Yes

Running shorts – Lycra – my choice
Running shirt – long sleeves – my choice
Polo Shirt x 2
Waxed type Jacket – still wearing it.
Black and White Kefeya Scarf – why do I still have it?

Yellow Indian Scarf – I like scarfs
Casual Rugby style shirts x 2 – 1long sleeve and 1 short sleeve – as above long sleeve good for winter.
Track suit bottoms  – new and thick and warm x1 – be snuggly in your apartment.
Bath towel – Why you idiot?
2 x blue jeans – Ok
7 cotton shirts –  for work etc 5 x long sleeve formal 2 x short sleeve casual – yes – OK
2 x thermal vests and 2 x thermal long johns – there is no heating in Chinese schools – again I mainly wear the vests in the winter.
6 pairs underpants – yes
7 pairs of socks – yes.

2 x ankle socks for running – just me.
1 woolly hat
1 woolly bobble hat – yes for the winter.
2 x pair thick socks – for the winter.
Running trousers (Lycra) – just me.
8 ties – all from Charity shops – all silk – 0.99p each.
Lumberjack style hat (bought in china last time)
1 x pair of gloves – yes – but you can buy gloves here
1 x neck scarf – you can buy scarfs here too
Long sleeve top – Ok for winter
Polo neck top – long sleeve – it was fleecy so good for winter.
White England Nike rugby top – of course.
Linen Suit – Yes from M&S a boon in the summer.
Trousers (work) – yes
Grey work jacket – yes
Micro fleece – yes.
Swimming shorts – yes – but you can but them here
Hiking boots – worn a lot especially during the winter in the classrooms and a boon when travelling.

That’s it in terms of clothes

Also in the suitcase is – to be listed when I’m sure I’ve got what I need. So that’s a first attempt at getting what I think I need/want. Theres a couple of other items I could take if I want, but I have to decide do I really want them as, after all, I will have to bring most of this back and I may not get 30 kilos of baggage allowance next time.

I’ve still got 7 kilos in my backpack and a computer case to go yet as well and I more week top sort it out as me and snooks are off on the 20th August.

Part two – adding more stuff.

Dark Suit – a business type suit – I wear it when meeting parents etc.
Wash bag with razor, toothbrush, small toothpaste, small bottle Calvin Klein One and other bits n pieces – of course.
Bigger wash bag holding various medicines including 20 lemsips (gold dust in China), some anti Beijing tummy remedy, migraine medicine, anadin, anti indigestion medicine etc.
Plus:
3 brown puffers (cenil modulate) – Ive not been using it.
4 blue ventolin – buy over the counter.
Canvas bag (present)
Shoe brushes x 2 – useful
3 x pairs of insoles – very useful for my flat feet.
small canvas artwork 6 x 6 inches – gift
2 x filters (for friends hot tub) -gift
4 x anti perspirent roll ons, – adding to the above
When I started to repack, the bag was weighing in at about 26 kilos. So I have reduced this by removing all the packaging from various medicines, removed a glass bottle of cough medicine ( I might regret this), the short sleeved rugby shirt, removed the bath towel, I can buy one in China, removed gloves, removed scarf and anything in superfluous packaging i.e., took shoes out of shoe bag.
Computer Bag carry on
Spare dog lead
Neoprene knee brace
Office folder containing papers, certificates etc
Ventolin
Hair clay
Olbas Oil 10ml – very useful if you have a cold to clear blocked sinuses and steam your tubes.
Kindle – now got the app on my smartphone
Google Nexus tablet – in a drawer I don’t use it
Hanky (cotton) – useful when you have a cold.
Notebooks x 2 – why?
Spare mobile phone – yes very useful – have a UK sim in it so your bank and text you your security numbers.
Glasses x 3 (reading) – you can buy glasses cheap in China if you find the right places.
Business cards
8 x USB memory sticks – did I really need that many?
Oxford School Thesaurus – Why when its online?
Apple Mac Book in case – Of course – I am still using this computer.
Dr Dre Headphones – yes.
Dogs papers – yes
Lead and Harness – yes.
This is about 7 kilos at the moment, it might be too heavy, the airline only stipulates a computer case or briefcase.
Back pack carry on
2 x electrical plug adaptors – useful until you get local stuff for your electronics
Camera – of course
All Charging leads for gadgets – deffo
Camera lens wrapped in scarf – yes
2 bags sweets for friends kids
spare glasses and sun glasses – yes
spare razor blades (1 pack) – you can buy them here – they are just as expensive.
Hat
moist toilet tissue = why?
Head torch (wind up) – yes useful.
anadin – very useful – its my headache remedy of choice. I bring lots
3 x Typhoo tea packs (I know coals to Newcastle etc – but you can’t beat a good cuppa, even in China!) – The most important thing in my bag.
This is about 5 kilos at the moment and can be 7 kilos as my carry on bag.
I have a waist belt as well which will have another pack of moist toilet tissue (a boon in China believe me) – I’m lying you can buy it here.
my sunglasses which I can wear around my neck when boarding,
my small camera which I can wear on my belt when boarding – dropped it – got it fixed and never used it again – my smart phone is better.
I also will carry an overcoat with stuff in the pockets.
Plus of course I will be wearing shirt, trousers, jacket, probably my fleece, doc martens etc.
Before leaving 
 I added a pair of shorts that were always going to be on the list but I had been wearing them and they were then in the wash.  Ive also added a fleece and a rain jacket but these two items are in my carry on at the moment. I’ve decanted my medicine out of the glass bottle that I rejected yesterday and put it into two 100ml plastic bottles. I’ve added some more teabags and a few bits and pieces such as Snookys  Ducky, two balls, plus tomorrow, I’ll have to add her lead, collar and harness as she is not allowed them on the plane she’s going on. But nothing else significant so the main bag is up to about 25 kilos. I think thats about it, Im happy with that.
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My bags

Chapter 3 – On the scrapheap and packing for the trip to China

It was made official I was on the scrapheap. My voluntary redundancy from the university was confirmed. I had been getting a bit worried as time was moving on and the agency in China had started to talk about getting visa’s and airplane tickets, and seminars in Beijing.

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I couldn’t believe I had been at the Plymouth University for twenty-four years. That’s a long time.

Packing for China – the final 20 kilo

In no particular order and with some explanation… plus an afterthought did I need it or could I have bought it in China?

Running shoes
Black shoes for work
Running shorts – Lycra – can buy in China
Running shirt – long sleeves – can buy in China (unless large size)
Fred  Perry Polo Shirt
Waxed type Jacket
Black and White Kefeya Scarf
Casual Rugby style shirts x 2 – 1long sleeve and 1 short sleeve
Track suit bottoms  – new and thick and warm x1 – can buy
University of Plymouth Hoodie – parting gift from my job – I asked for it, and they are warm and good quality
Large Bath sheet – smaller ones can be purchased in China but not bath sheets
1 pair black jeans – can buy H&M or Uniqlo
1 pair Khaki Chinos – can buy H&M or Uniqlo
4 cotton shirts –  for work etc – can buy H&M or Uniqlo unless large size (can be made)
2 x thermal vests and 2 x thermal long johns – I’m told that there is no heating in Chinese schools
6 pairs underpants (M&S of course) – can buy look out for Mini So stores
10 pairs of socks (1 pair a month huh?) -can buy look out for Mini So stores
1 woolly hat (courtesy of Darling Daughter, she bought it in Marrakesh)
1 woolly bobble hat – can buy
1 pair thick socks – can buy
Running trousers (Lycra) – can buy

That’s it in terms of clothes

Also in the suitcase is:

A bag with 6 underarm deodorants (from the £1 shop) – reduced from 10 – apparently you can’t get deodorant in China! You can buy it’s rare and expensive – Find a Mini So shop

Plus 5 small bottles of shaving oil.

Various prescription medicines, 3 Ventolin and 3 of the steroid puffers.  3 packs of Imodium (just in case!), about 12 of my migraine drugs (but hopefully will not need) cliploc bags x 2 boxes for teacher in china. 2 x large bars of chocolate requested by teacher in china.

Swiss Army penknife.

                                             Unfortunately Snooks couldn’t fit as she’s 5.5 kilos….and this wasn’t posed she got in my suitcase – she’s been following me around like a shadow for the past week – I think she knows…..
Im also allowed 7 kilos in my carry on cabin bag and I can take my laptop bag on with me.
My carry on allowance is 7 kilo. I’m using a backpack and have just about squeezed 7 kilo of stuff in.

This is it:

From the bottom up:

Canvas tote bag with a big plastic bag of PG Tips in it! Talk about coals to Newcastle – I’m taking tea to China! – Very important – you cannot get decent tea.
Waterproof jacket
Clean shirt – Ben Sherman
Micro fleece – can buy
Multi coloured fleece –  can buy in Uniqlo
Rough Guide to China
Recharging cables for kindle, camera and new mobile phone (you can get the plugs and peripherals everywhere)
Camera

In the front pocket:
First aid kit
Berocca vitamins
Ventolin pump
Shoe polish for the Cherry Reds

1 brush
Neoprene knee brace
Reading/computer glasses

And in the top pocket

Toilet paper (moist) Apparently this is crucial when out and about around the Chinese City (you can buy)
6 migraine medicines
Ventolin
Brown inhaler
Mini torch
Lemsips x 10 (gold dust take more)
Anadia extra (take more) (Also think about your favourite cold remedy and Olbas oil for steaming your chest)

And in my Laptop bag which is also pushing 5 kilo

Photos (to show students)
Spare glasses x 1
Spare sun glasses x 1
4 x teaching books
2 x 100 index cards – useless
Mac book pro and charger (technology is priced the same as UK in China)
Kindle
Note book
Plymouth photo souvenir book – for students
Business cards
Ventolin (be prepared – I was a scout after all)
and Brown inhaler
pen pencil etc

So that’s it apart from the clothes I’ll be wearing,

I am planning on wearing during the trip, blue jeans, shirt, Dr Martens shoes, black jacket – and the crombie overcoat I’ll have to carry.
It’s not much is it for 10 months away?
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Nanjing College of Information Technology