Updated: Mar 13, 2019
A well-travelled friend said, 'Every time I travel I take less than the last time.' I do the same.
I enjoy the challenge of finding multiple uses for the one product. But then I'm unembarrassable - I did the Polar Plunge* in a black bra and undies.
Long before Saltbush Eco Store was born Michael (Lauren's dad) and I stocked up with reusable products at Kathmandu (the shop not the city - although we did eventually get to stock up there too). We bought a stainless steel foldable cutlery set each and water bottle, rechargeable batteries and charger, silicone ear plugs, etc etc. My sister gave us one of those light as a feather nylon shopping bags that fold down to nothing. This also served as a laundry bag when it was time to hit the laundromat - so reusable and dual purpose.
We did take some plastics but they were all reusable - a sturdy plastic cup that could be used for hot and cold drinks and for sticking our toothbrushes in to drain, plastic bowls and food containers, zip lock bags for holding dry food, and film canisters I'd been saving since my last trip 20 years ago for decanting small quantities of shampoo and moisturiser into.
Now that we have Saltbush travel will be even easier. Since Saltbush opened we have bought a bamboo spork, stainless steel straws and a cloth cutlery bag to store them in, as well as bamboo toothbrush holders and lots more travel-ready items.
And joy of joys - shampoo bars! The biggest headache when travelling long-term is dealing with liquids. No matter how well sealed, they always end up leaking after sloshing around in cargo holds or being up-ended during security searches.
So no more liquid shampoos and body washes for me. One of Jodi's O'Soapure grapefruit shampoo bars will keep me going for months. And her handmade soaps will be a wonderful indulgence for my ultra dry skin, as will a 'so brightly coloured you can't lose it' Muddy Creek soap be for Michael.
Travel is such an important part of our lives that we take trips of at least a few months almost every year. We try to travel as low waste as possible to protect the environment abroad as well as at home. It isn't always easy when you're on the move constantly but we attempt to recycle and compost whenever we can, and use our bowls and cutlery instead of throwaway dishes for breakfasts and picnic lunches.
I look forward to our next trip being even lighter now that we have added a few more lightweight reusable options. World, here we come again!
* a jump into the sub zero degrees Antarctic Ocean
Here’s a link to an article I wrote for Tucan Travel on travelling light: https://www.tucantravel.com/blog/2014/08/preparing-for-long-trips-or-how-to-stay-sane-for-a-year-in-just-two-outfits/