Australia and Tasmania: Packing Continues

Still in Carlsbad, I bought some tools to round out my kit, then began to work on the bike. I listened to Terry Pratchett's "Wee Free Men" as an audiobook, and carefully considered each step as I went, fully intending to take all day long with this one task. I felt like a retiree restoring a classic car in his garage. I removed the front rack and set it apart since it would not be going to Australia. Then I repositioned the front headlight, and removed the seat post, the rear rack, both pedals, and both wheels.

Still in Carlsbad, I bought some tools to round out my kit, then began to work on the bike. I listened to Terry Pratchett’s “Wee Free Men” as an audiobook, and carefully considered each step as I went, fully intending to take all day long with this one task. I felt like a retiree restoring a classic car in his garage.

I removed the front rack and set it apart since it would not be going to Australia. Then I repositioned the front headlight, and removed the seat post, the rear rack, both pedals, and both wheels.

In Carlsbad my luggage went from stage 2 to stage 3: I packed up most of the items I would not be needing in Australia into my first backpack, and my Mom agreed to ship them north to Oakland for me. The passport and other documents had been mailed to Carlsbad, so I unwrapped all that, and sent some of it to Oakland and placed the rest in my backpack. I also unwrapped a new pair of shoes, and left my old pair and my ski jacket (used to stroll around looking for Santa) in Carlsbad. Then I unwrapped the box that held my bicycle shipping container, and assembled it slowly in the living room. This travel business is complicated!

At long last I found a configuration that got the entire bike into the box. Everything except the wheels goes on this first layer, then a plastic separator goes on top, then the wheels.

Slightly repacked gear, with my clothing around the bike as padding.

Slightly repacked gear, with my clothing around the bike as padding.

Up in the Simi Valley, my luggage went to stage 4: I split the contents of my suitcase, and packed one half into the bike box, and the other half into my backpack. Now my gear for Australia was contained in a single carry-on backpack, and a single checked oversize box. If the airline managed to lose my box, I would lose my bike and my laundry, but everything else would be safe. The trip could still be a success.

Here I am, freshly shaved, on the morning of the trip. In retrospect I look very skinny in this picture, which makes sense because I was still in the midst of dealing with my thyroid condition…

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