|Not the whitest kid on the beach, but maybe the cutest?|
Greetings, or more appropriately Aloha from Sunny Hawaii. For those of you who couldn't guess from the picture I posted earlier, we are on the island of Oahu. Kailua, on the windward side to be precise. It's a picture perfect destination, with one of the most beautiful beaches in the world and we are very much enjoying it's charms.
As we do on most vacations, we opted not to stay at a resort but to rent a cottage near the beach in a smaller town instead. It's less expensive this way, and although there are still a lot of tourists around, most of the people hanging out at this gorgeous white sand beach are locals. We have found this to be our type of relaxing vacation, but of course there are drawbacks. One that comes to mind is that, given that this is a beach community, most of the locals spend a lot of time in the water, getting tanned and incredibly fit. Mrs. LIAYF even commented to me the other day "Wow, everyone is in such good shape here."
Now I am a reasonably slender guy, but hanging out on the beach amidst all these locals has more than once made me feel like I was Uncle Buck out there. And being fairly pale from the rainy Seattle winter and spring hasn't helped matters either. Thankfully though, we are not the whitest people on the beach. Yes, we make sure to spot those who are early on with each trip down there.
Another thing we realized shortly after we arrived was how grossly over packed we were. The three of us each had carry on backpacks, plus we each checked an additional bag. Add to that a car seat and we were slugging through the airport. One of our rolling duffel's was even 6 pounds over the 50lb limit and I had to quickly shift those pounds to the other bags or pay Alaskan another 50 spot. This was after we bought a couple of those vacuum seal bags to conserve more space to pack unnecessary things.
Our over-packing probably stemmed from Mrs. LIAYF and I being so incredibly busy leading up to the trip. We had practically zero spare time to even think about what we would need, so we ended up just bringing things, just in case.
In my own case, things such as....
A Beach tent - Way too windy here to use, even if we wanted to.
Pants - Seemed like a good idea in Seattle.
Fleece pullover - For those chilly Hawaiian evenings?
15 too many shirts - We have a washer and dryer, so I could have brought just 4 or 5.
3 books - What, the islands turn me into Evelyn Wood?
4 swimsuits - I have used only the one. Newsflash, it dries in the sun.
Beach towels - Yes, these were provided at our cottage
Multiples of almost every bathroom item - Er...I should have checked with my wife.
This was only really the tip of the iceberg, as Mrs. LIAYF also packed much more than she or Lukas would need for clothes, along with loads of toys and books for Lukas, and a few containers of dry foods so that we wouldn't have to spend so much on food when we got here.
It's not like we are amateurs at packing either as Mrs. LIAYF and I spent two weeks in Germany and Italy about 10 years ago with only a large backpack each for the whole trip. But alas, that was well before we were parents and we had plenty of time to carefully plan each item we would take along. Even so, too much stuff or not, right now we are just happy to be on vacation.
Plus, I will probably be in much better shape by the time I schlep all these heavy bags back to Seattle.
How about you readers? Do you over-pack when you go on vacations too?