After flying back from Chile on Tuesday, I spent the next 3 days in the San Francisco Bay Area doing laundry, changing gear, reading mail, and seeing a few friends. I even got to go on an overnight sailing trip in the Bay!
Without a house to return to, I bounced around from hotel, to AirBnB, to boat... So even though I was "home," it didn't exactly feel like it. Fortunately, my stay was only a few days. It will be interesting to see what happens when I return in October for possibly three weeks! A few friends have been gracious enough to offer me a room. (Thank you!)
I'm now at the San Francisco International Airport waiting for my flight to Munich, Germany, connecting through London. I am excited because I have friends in Germany that are always so fun to hang out with, especially during Oktoberfest, or Wiesn as the locals call it. I've lost track, but I think this will be my 5th time at Wiesn. We will spend a few days drinking beer and eating rotisserie chicken, then work it all off with a hike in the Alps.
Something tells me maybe we should reverse the order of events next time...Nevertheless, I'm happy to be on the road again.
I'm testing out a couple new items in my kit. First, I have a new primary backpack that is carry-on size. Against my own sense of aesthetics and style, this pack is more of a traveling-backpack than a backpacking-backpack. I guess I'm getting a little older so function is ruling over form. Second, after a month of being cold in Chile, I invested in a new mid-weight fleece hoodie from Arc'teryx as my day to day outer wear, plus I'm bringing my lightweight down vest. These, in addition to my full waterproof pants and jacket, will be great on the hike. Third, I'm leaving my big DSLR camera (and its special small pack) at home, and instead I'm bringing my CamelBak as my second bag. This will also be useful on the hike, whereas I didn't want to lug my DSLR around on the hike (or Wiesn, for that matter).
When I have time, maybe I'll publish a short list of my entire kit. (I've read a few adventure books and that seems to be something that is often included in the appendix.) Perhaps I'll do that in November, when the third and longest leg of my journey begins.
For now, it's time to catch my flight... Servus!