Clothes optional: Living from a suitcase

It’s amazing what you think you need when trying to fit under a luggage allowance. I have an enormous suitcase which I initially half-filled with clothes and half-filled with electronics… It weighed 30kg. Oops! I unpacked it all and went back to the beginning.

I was born. Or so I’m told, I don’t remember back that far. I do remember my last holiday to Vietnam though. You, dear reader (or spam-bot scanning for keywords) may also remember the beginning of the trip, until I was too busy, too poorly Internet-connected, too ill, or having too much fun to blog. That’s the brief summary of Saigon, Hoi An, Hue and Hanoi respectively.

So, Vietnam adventure completed and summarised, I returned home well and truly convinced that my newer sojourn plans were quite workable.

I informed my boss (the conversation actually started with my bosses’s wife at her business’s Christmas party) that I would have to be leaving my job as I wished to move to Vietnam. His response was “Oh, I’ve thought about opening a studio in Vietnam. You should do that for me.”

I’ll skip over the intervening months, to leave filler for later posts. A couple of spoilers though:

  • I am not at this point opening a studio in Vietnam, but instead I will be working remotely for BigWorld.
  • I’m enrolled at the ANU taking a Vietnamese language major, and continuing it in Vietnam.
  • I have a visa and probably somewhere to live.
  • I’ve been watching Lauren Faust’s My Little Pony series,and published my first Android App and a couple of PMVs on Youtube.
  • I own a Kobo Touch and much fewer novels than I used to, but just as many video games.

Having done all that, I repacked my suitcase taking all my relevant electronics and doodads, none of my books — except my tiny Vietnamese/English dictionary — and whatever clothing I could then fit. This came out to 23kg and four complete outfits, on the assumption that I’ll either find a washing service quickly, or find a sufficiently large clothing store quickly. That’s a store that sells sufficiently large clothing, not a sufficiently large store that sells clothing.

Hopefully this is sufficient preparation for an indefinite stay in Vietnam. Because it’s too late. Like Caeser, I’ve tossed my rubix cube; arrived in Melbourne with only the clothes on my back and a big suitcase, and will be leaving with the same — except 3kg lighter due to different baggage allowances.

Melbourne’s decided to help me prepare in its own way, by taking my three days here as pleasant (a half-day), unexpectedly hot (spent indoors watching TV and browsing the web), and torrential rain (for my walk to the train station…). I did pack an umbrella, so I’m taking this as a validation, not a warning.

I’m not panicing, and I’m carrying a towel. Today Melbourne, tomorrow Hanoi. And the day after that… probably Hanoi again.

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