Charlie Wyman

Packing List

Per Charlie’s request, here is my finalized packing list, an update of this list:

DSC_0216

  • Three cotton t-shirts
  • Three synthetic fiber t-shirts
  • One “nice” shirt, a polo
  • Two pairs of cotton shorts
  • Three pairs of synthetic underwear
  • Four pair of sythetic socks
  • One lightweight jacket, rainproof
  • One fleece pull-over
  • One longsleeve thermal top
  • One pair of synthetic khaki pants with zippoff legs
  • Swim trunks
  • One baseball cap
  • One hat
  • One pair of walking shoes
  • One pair of sandals
  • One eqyptian cotton sleeping sack (not bag)
  • One memory foam pillow (cut in half from normal size)
  • One set of PJ’s: White cotton undershirt and plad cotton bottoms
  • Nikon D70 with one battery
  • Battery charging station
  • Cleaing cloth/grey card
  • Cleaning stick
  • Three memory cards: 2x 4GB and 1x 1GB
  • 18-70mm
  • 70-300mm
  • 50mm
  • Gorillapod Tripod
  • GPS Unit
  • One USB cable to connect camera/GPS to computer
  • Moleskine notebook
  • Ballpoint pen
  • Lowepro Camera Bag
  • Netbook computer
  • Two North American to European unearthed prong adapters. Note: These just change the physical pin connections and does not convert the electricity in any manner. Almost all electronic devices now accept 100v-250v 50-60Hz, which covers the entire world-wide range of electrical power.
  • Travel alarm clock
  • Pocket translator
  • Headlamp1
  • iPod Nano, 8GB with USB connector cord
  • Earbuds
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss
  • Night mouth guard
  • Melatonin tablets
  • Travel soap bar
  • Travel shampoo
  • Aleve
  • Sunscreen
  • Aloe
  • Hydrocortisone
  • Anti-fungal
  • Razor, with four blades
  • Shaving cream
  • Super absorbant small towel
  • Super absorbant face cloth
  • Deoderant
  • First Aid Kit
  • Contacts, solution, case
  • Glasses with case
  • Sun glasses
  • Two lip balms
  • Ear plugs
  • Nail clippers
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Immune boosters
  • Nalgene
  • Backpack, Osprey Waypoint 80
  • Daypack backpack
  • Moneybelt
  • A couple of combination locks
  • One bag lock (to lock bags to something immovable)
  • Swiss army knife
  • Wrist watch
  • Laundary soap
  • Laundary line
  • Bible
  • Moose

I packed everything into sets of mesh bags, roughly organized by like items. The mesh bags then pack nicely into my backpack. The Osprey backpack does have it’s own built-in day pack, however I made a last minutes change (literally on the way to the airport) to also bring a The North Face day pack and I’m very happy I did. I’m also happy I brought my iPod, as I use that almost every day when I fall asleep at night and on train and bus rides.

Things acquired after leaving home:

  • Eyemask for sleeping

I’m also having sent over with Charlie some addition supplies including a tube for putting poster I buy in, a couple of flat piece of cardboard to pack a matted picture, maybe a heavier duty rain jacket, and maybe a small set of camping dinner ware.

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  1. I bought an Energizer 3 LED with red night-time light for less than $15 at Target 

The Three Amigos

After much convincing, the third partner in my trip is finally on board. Quinn’s actually been onboard for a while, he just finally purchased his ticket today…which means that he’s really on board now.

Charlie’s the the other partner on this trip. He’ll be joining me in Istanbul on 22 June, while Quinn won’t be joining us until around 10 July in Switzerland.

All three of us met tonight to get some logistics figure out. I think it was productive, at least as far as any meeting can be. Charlie’s going to be figuring out how to get us from Turkey to Greece, in addition to what where we’ll be going. Meanwhile, I’ll be figuring out where Charlie and I will be sleeping while in Istanbul and Cappadocia.

Italy is more or less figured out.

For Switzerland, I think the plan is to work our way from the southwest to the northeast, going through Interlaken, Lucerne, and St. Gallen.

Austria’s also mostly planed out.

With only four days left, I’ve finally started to pack. I have most of my stuff already, which just a few small things to pick up here and there. I’ll be releasing an updated itinerary and packing list in the next couple of days.

P.S. Quinn’s on the left, Charlie’s on the right.

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Itinerary v0.4: Turkey, Greece, and Italy

I started writing this post with the idea that I’d meetup with Charlie in Turkey. We’d be in Turkey for about a week before going to Greece and then on to Italy before meeting up with Quinn in Switzerland on the 7th of July. Well, I got about half way through this post and realized: there’s no way we can do Turkey, Greece, and Italy in 14 days. I mean, we could, but we wouldn’t have any fun. I posted an update to my Twitter/Facebook page: “Andrew Ferguson is wondering about Turkey/Greece/Italy…I think I can only fit two of them in :-/ Thoughts?” Amazingly enough, I got 10 responses, two of which advocated Greece and Italy, five of which advocated Turkey and Greece, and two of which were rather admiment about Turkey. Since I’d already been to Italy before, I decided that Turkey and Greece would be two I would go to.

Then, I talked to Charlie today and he came up with this amazing plan that will not only allow us to see Turkey, Greece, and Italy, but it will also let Quinn spend a few days at the L’Abri.

This is Itinerary v0.4:

  • Day 1 (June 2nd):
    Seattle, Washington
    Dulles, Washington, DC
  • Day 2 (June 3rd): Moscow, Russia
  • Day 8 (June 9th): St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Day 13 (June 14th): Tallin, Estonia
  • Day 17: Ukraine
    Kiev
    Chernobyl
  • Day 21 (June 22nd): Turkey
    Istanbul
    Cappadocia
  • Day 28 (June 29rd): Greece 29th-4th / 6
  • Day 34 (July 5th): Italy
    Naples
    Rome
    Venice
    Cinque Terra
  • Day 40 (July 11th): Switzerland
  • Day 44 (July 15th):Austria
    Salzburg
    Vienna
    Innsbruck
  • Day 49 (July 20th): Hungary
    Budapest
  • Day 52 (July 23rd): Czech Republic
  • Day 55 (July 26th): Poland
  • Day 58 (July 29th): Germany

As you’ll notice, the entire key to this plan is slipping the start of Switzerland back four days to July 11th. As it turns out, this works out quite nicely.

To recap: after Ukraine, I’ll be joining Charlie in Turkey, who will travel with me for the remainder of my (now our) trip. Greece and Italy is currently the topic of hot debate for us. Basically, we need to meet Quinn (who will be joining both of us in Switzerland) around the 7th 11th of July. Thus, Charlie and I need to get through Turkey, Greece, and Italy between the 22nd of June to the 7th 11th of July…15 19 days. For the purpose of this post, I’m going to assume that we’ll be fine traveling in Turkey. Instead, I’m going to focus on plans for the Greece and Italy portion.

We’ve gone through several ideas including literally all modes of transportation, including planes, trains, renting a car, renting a motorcycle, renting a moped, ferries, and buses.

As much fun I think it would be to rent a car and drive through Italy, it would probably be cost prohibitive for just two people. Here’s why:

$361.04 for a 5 day rental of a Ford Fiesta (Manual Transmission) with unlimited kilometers through Hertz with pickup in Bari, Italy and drop off in Milan, Italy

Plus a $22.50/day young drive fee ($112.50 total)

Plus gas for driving from Bari to Agnone to Rome to Venice to Milano for a total of 1335 km. Assuming 12km/L1, that’s 111.25 Liters of fuel. Finding gas prices is hard, I’m going with $5.80/gal2 which is $1.54/L. So add another $170 for gas.
We’re already up to $643.50, and that doesn’t even include toll fees. So driving is out.

I tried looking for a place that would rent one-way motorcycles or mopeds, and I couldn’t find any. So that’s out too.

Charlie mentioned the Eurorail idea, so I looked at that. And I think it would actually be pretty feasible.

Initially, I looked at the Eurail Greece – Italy Pass, which costs $250/person for 5 days of travel in a 2 month period.

However, after looking at Charlie’s new itinerary, we decided that it would actually be more cost effective to purchase the Eurail Global 21 Day Pass for $589. It’s important to note that this is for 21 continuous days of travel, not 21 days of travel in 2 months. The idea is to use this for travel in Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, and Czech Republic. Poland isn’t part of the Eurail Global pass, so it actually works quite perfectly, especially considering we’ll be traveling about every other day…more or less.

One idea to get from Greece to Italy would be to take the Superfast Ferry from Igoumenitsa, Greece, departing daily at 23:59 to Bari, Italy, arriving at 08:30.

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  1. http://www.mapsofworld.com/referrals/cars/small-cars/subcompact-cars/ford-fiesta.html 

  2. http://fabulously40.com/article/id/2171 

Ukraine and Itinerary v0.3

Now that I have my plans to Russia finalized, I’ve started to plan out other parts of my trip. It also sounds like Charlie and Quinn are both seriously considering coming along for at least part of my adventure. Quinn has a prior engagement that will tie him up until the first part of July, but he’s considering joining me then. Charlie has a bit more flexibility and I’m trying to convince him to join me for the second part of June.

In talking with Charlie, he encouraged me to do a little bit of route optimization. I’ve come up with Itinerary v0.3, which is essentially a reorganization of v0.2; I’ve also dropped France from the list…although I could put it back later. I’ve also, tentatively, added a stop in Greece.

Trip Path

Trip Path

As for Ukraine, I started looking and there are tours of Chernobyl! This is both incredibly exciting and scary1. There are a handful of companies that provide tours, each of them seem to have equal pricing and offerings, starting at $150/person or so. A bit more than I want to pay, but could be worth it I think, especially since it’s an all day adventure and includes lunch2. Pictures are also allowed, so I would definitely be a happy camper there.

TourKiev is the leading contender for the tour, they’re also recommended by The Lonely Planet and seem to be pretty professional.

Other travel companies include UkrainianWeb and SAM Travel Company.

In doing some research, I found this interesting slide show from the EPA, Chernobyl: An Inside Tour. I also found an obituary for Constantin Rudy, who’s mentioned extensively in the EPA slide show and who seemed like a pretty cool guy.

Interesting side note, part of Call of Duty 43 is set in Prypiat, Ukraine, which is just 2km from Chernobyl. When I was looking at the pictures from the tour companies, I immediately recognized them as from the game…creepy.

Itinerary v0.3:

  • Day 1:
    Seattle, Washington
    Dulles, Washington, DC
  • Day 2: Moscow, Russia
  • Day 8: St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Day 14: Tallin, Estonia
  • Day 16: Ukraine
    • Kiev
    • Chernobyl
  • Day 18: Turkey
    • Istanbul
    • Antalya
    • Ephesus
    • Cappadocia
  • Day 24: Greece
  • Day 26: Italy:
    • Rome
    • Venice
    • Agnone
  • Day 36: Switzerland
    • Arbon
    • Interlaken
  • Day 40: Austria
  • Day 44: Budapest, Hungary
  • Day 50: Prague, Czech Republic
  • Day 53: Warsaw, Poland
  • Day 57: Germany
  • Day 62: Seattle
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  1. “According to our guide the radiation dose you get from a day at Chernobyl is less than from a transatlantic flight. In other words, it’s supposed to be safe.” 

  2. brought in from outside the exclusion zone 

  3. a video game I play on occasion 

Things to Do, Things to Pack

Plans are well under way now! I just booked my flight to Europe. I’ll be leaving on June 2nd at 7:30am and flying Seattle to Dulles (UA916/767-300) to Moscow (UA964/767-300), arriving at 10:45am on June 3rd, business class. I’ll be spending just over 60 days in Europe before I fly back on August 3rd, flying at 8:25am from Frankfurt to Chicago (UA945/777) to Seattle (UA929/757-200) and arriving at 2:24pm the same day, also business class. Fortunately, I’m using miles. Otherwise it looks like it would cost about $9,539.76 out of pocket.

Here’s the seat I’ll be getting to enjoy for the 15 hours it takes to get the Moscow:
united_business

Unfortunately, United hasn’t started to upgrade the seats on the 777, so my ride won’t be as comfortable on the way back. However, I do get First Class for the Chicago to Seattle flight.

I also booked a hostel for my stay in Moscow, I’ll be at the Olimpia Hostel. Should be good.

With all that done, I figure I better turn my attention to what I’m going to bring (and not bring). Like my itinerary, this list will definitely be updated as I think of more things and people suggest things to bring or not to bring.

To Do

  • Check on current level of travel insurance (health and theft)
  • Get travel visa for Russia
  • Buy Europe on a Shoestring1
  • Convince Quinn to come
  • Convince Charlie to come
  • Get ISIC (International Student Identity Card). Should only be $22?
  • Check into touring Chernobyl and get dosimeter badge

To Pack

  • Backback: The side loading green one2 or top loading grey/blue one
  • Clothes:
    • Orange REI jacket or Blue The North Face running jacket
    • Four t-shirts
    • One better shirt
    • Four pairs of socks
    • Four pairs of boxer-briefs3, they really are quite comfortable
    • One pair of nylon khaki pants with zipoff legs
    • One pair of4 shorts
    • Swim trunks
    • Sleepwear
    • Hat
    • The North Face green fleece/The North Face black polypro
    • One set of shoes5
    • One pair of sandals6
  • Camera/Electronics
    • One camera bag with slot for netbook and will double as day pack
    • One Nikon D90
    • One 50mm f/1.8 Prime lens
    • One 18-70mm lens
    • Headphones
    • One Netbook
    • Laptop lock
    • US/Europe/Russia electricity converter
  • Toiletries
    • Deoderant
    • Hand soap/Shampoo
    • Washcloth
    • Toothbrush/toothpaste
    • Floss
    • Mouth guard
    • Ibuprofen
    • Melatonin
    • Flagyl7
    • Moleskin8
    • Antibiotics
    • Bandaids
    • Medical tape
    • Charcoal pills
    • Penicillin
    • My meds
    • Nail clipper
    • Tweezers
    • Sunscreen
    • Lip balm
    • Contacts/contact solution/contact case
    • Glasses/case
    • Ear plugs
  • Miscellaneous
    • Nalgene
    • Money belt9
    • Padlock
    • Flashlight w/extra batteries
    • Laundry soap
    • Small towel
    • Sleeping bag
    • Pillow
    • Sunglasses (el cheapo’s)
    • Swiss Army Knife
    • Casio Waveceptor waterproof watch

Many items taken from: Packing Checklist for Asia and Rick’s Packing List.

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  1. and finally return the library their copy 

  2. my parents took on their trip to 

  3. ExOfficio Men’s Give-N-Go® Boxer Brief 

  4. http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=636528 

  5. New Balance 991 

  6. Keen’s 

  7. in case of dysentary 

  8. in case of blisters 

  9. Rick Steves Essential Silk Moneybelt 

Updated Itinerary

Progess is being made! I’m calling this Itinerary v0.2. It appears that the only country that will need a visa is Russia. Thus, I’m going to going to start my travels there since it will have to be the most planned part of this trip. I talked with Jeff last night, as he had traveled to Russia several years ago, and got some good information on places to go. I’m hoping to have trip start and end dates locked down and reserved by the end of March, along with all the Russian parts locked down and reserved. 

I also talked with Quinn and Charlie, both of whom have indicated they would at least be interested in doing some traveling with me as well. I have calls in to Katelyn and Erin, both of whom have been and are currently in Turkey, respecitvely.

Below is a list of places that I think I would like to visit, in roughtly the order that I would visit them. I’ve also added notes (mostly to myself) about things I’d like to do there. I think this seems like a more managable list than previously. I’m also trying to setup a framework of things to do, however still allow the trip to progress organically.

  • Day 1: 
    Seattle, Washington 
    Dulles, Washington, DC
  • Airplane/10 hrs/UA964
  • Day 2: Moscow, Russia12
    • Red Square
    • The Kremlin
    • GUM
  • Airplane/1.25 hrs/$60 USD/Rossiya – Russian Airlines3
  • Day 6: St. Petersburg, Russia45
  • Bus/6 hrs/€30 ($40 USD)/EuroLines
  • Day 10: Tallin, Estonia6
  • France:
    • Paris, France (Paris Air Show – 15 to 21 June 2009)
    • Toulouse, France7
    • La Barre, France8
    • Vélizy, France9
    • Bidos, France 10
  • Italy:
    • Rome, Italy
    • Venice, Italy
    • Grottaglie, Italy11
    • Agnone, Italy12
  • Switzerland
    • Arbon, Switzerland
    • Interlaken, Switzerland13
  • Austria
  • Czech Republic
  • Poland
  • Ukraine
    • I’ve heard you can visit Chernobyl…could be cool.
  • Hungary
  • Turkey
  • Germany -> Seattle (UA8718)

Alternates:

  • Sweden14
  • Denmark->Seattle (UA9394)
  • Romania
  • Macedonia
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  1. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/east/moscow.htm 

  2. http://www.lonelyplanet.com/russia/moscow/sights 

  3. http://www.anywayanyday.ru/en/ 

  4. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/east/petersbu.htm 

  5. http://www.lonelyplanet.com/russia/st-petersburg/sights 

  6. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/scan/tallinn.htm 

  7. 787 Production Stop: Groupe Latécoère 

  8. Birthplace of Jean-Luc Picard 

  9. 787 Production Stop: Messier-Dowty 

  10. 787 Production Stop: Messier-Dowty 

  11. 787 Production Stop: http://www.seattlepi.com/business/275606_italy28.html 

  12. We visited Agnone a couple of years, it’s where my maternal great-grandfather was born, and  I’ve wanted to return here to just spend a few days hanging out 

  13. I’ve heard this is a must 

  14. 787 Production Stop: Saab 

Everyone I know is Studying Abroad!

Not everyone. But a lot.

Jeff Staples is in El Salvador. Charlie Wyman is in Ecuador. Amelie Mabbutt and Hannah Bellinger are in Spain (although not with the same group…as far as I know). Julia Masnik and David Clausen are in London (together). Jessen Myburgh is in Greece. Alison White is in New Zealand. Katherine Staples is at St. Andrew’s in Scotland. Katie Shaiman is in Edinburgh, Scotland. Matthew Knowles was in France. Amy Dubetz is in Budapest. Amy Beck is in Buenos Aires. Lindsay Hansberry is in Europe.

There could be others, but I’m done looking through Facebook, for now, trying to figure out where everyone is. The point still stands though: A crap ton of people I know are not in the United States (or Canada or Mexico) right now.

Update:
Mesa Schumacher is in Peru. Kelly Nolan is Florence.

Next school year, Brittany Linton is going to Japan and Devan O is going to London.

Update II:
Lauren Rubinfeld is in Sydney, Australia.

Update III:
Dan Lecocq is in Japan!

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