Burkina Faso Packing List From the Future
Dear “May 2010 Joey“,
Greetings from the future. Right about now, you are running around like crazy trying to fit the next 2+ years of your life into 2 suitcases before your June departure to Burkina Faso. In reminiscing about that time in our life and also to drive traffic to our blog from soon-to-be trainees, I’ve included this packing list of the things I recommend bringing to Burkina. The list is very small compared to the 5 page document you got from Peace Corps. As you well know, we are a very simple person who prior to this trip had no camping experience or experience living in another country. Here are the things I would bring if I were you (and I actually am you so apparently you aren’t going to take my own advice, or maybe you just haven’t seen this blog post yet):
- Digital Camera
- 5 pairs of 100% nylon light-weight pants
- Lots of underwear
- Lots of deoderant
- Head lamp
- Bug tent
- Laptop – You are going to need this as an IT teacher and I am not sure what we would have done without it. I highly recommend a cheap one with a Linux operating system (viruses are rampant in Africa, virtually and real-life-lly).
- 2 USB keys – good job getting 8GB each
- Ipod – in the case that you don’t end up bringing a laptop (which you actually did – time travel is very confusing)
Really, that is it. You could have fit everything you needed into one suitcase if it wasn’t for the size of the bug tent and Thermarest. Everything else that you really need, you can get here in the bigger cities. “May 2010 Joey“, you should spend a LOT less time stressing about what to bring here and a lot more time hanging out with your friends and family, eating a lot of amazing food (especially pizza and ice cream… or ice cream pizza), and relaxing and enjoying the luxuries like toilets and showers. Just try to land in Burkina with a little extra cash (we don’t get much money during training) and get all the rest of the stuff you need here. The quality might not always be as good but at least you will be better integrated having local products and meet more people getting those local products fixed when they break.
Stay cool over the summer,
PS – Do me a favor and put a $200 parlay on the SF Giants, Packers, Uconn, and Animal Kingdom to win. I’ll pay you back when you get here.
PSS – How’s that INH treatment going? I’m having a beer in your honor…sucker.
PSSS – Watch out for the Libyans in the mall parking lot.
Now for some more random pictures: