I’d mailed a bunch of boxes to myself at my Mama’s address…… stuff that I wanted to take to Dubai with me but that I didn’t want to pay excess baggage charges for in the US – they don’t have the “first bag flies free” deal here,,,,,,, so I mailed them to myself. Cheaper, right? I thought I was being pretty dang smart…… oh, and I’d bought this really cool thing called a ScottEvest – holy COW do travelers need this puppy! Go to their website, http://www.scottevest.com/ and take a look – I had read about them on another travel blogger’s website, forget which one, sorry. But they came very highly recommended, for sure. So, I hunted down the discount codes (surely you didn’t think I was gonna pay full price, now did you??) and ordered one for me and TheBigGuy. Sucker is awesome – holds my ipad, iphone, headphones, wallet, camera, bottle of water, keys, passport, id, lip balm, eyedrops, just about anything you can imagine, and it does it really comfortably and without feeling like a packhorse. Just get one, I had my friend Donna try mine on fully loaded, and she said “Heck people would be taking this to the ball fields, shopping on BlackFriday, everything!” With coupons, it was about $75, and easily carried enough stuff to fill a carryon bag. OK, not *fill* but allow you room for other stuff, plus, your stuff was on you, easily accessible. Plus, you just take it off, lay it on the bucket deal going through security, and you’re done. Fabulous, and worth every penny.
The boxes I’d mailed myself finally started trickling in after about 10 days (!) most ended up arriving looking like this……
When ALL of the parcels that I’d mailed to myself from Dothan, Alabama finally arrived at Mama’s house, (total of 17 DAYS transit time!!) we busted out the brand-spanking new luggage I’d bought at Sam’s Club. Big, cavernous Samsonite futuristic-looking stuff, all shiny and smooth composite looking. I’d measured it beforehand to make certain that they were within the major airlines’ size limitations.
Packing stuff was weird – I was trying to distribute things between cases weight-wise, but also in case that one was lost, not all my clothes were in it, nor all of TBG’s – I was trying to spread around the potential grief…. so giant Ziploc bags to the rescue. Plus, it makes it easier for TSA to view what’s in there, without actually pawing through all my panties, you see?
About this time, Mama was starting to come to terms with the fact that this was really happening, that I was really moving to the other side of the planet. This was not easy for either of us, but I think she’s finally come to terms with it in some way. But there were still tears and a bunch of sadness, for sure.
I had read that shipping a #50 case was $100, but #51 – 70 went up DRAMATICALLY. So we did the “stand on the scale without the suitcase, then pick it up and weigh again” trick on Mama’s bathroom scales. Multiple times. I was nervous about this since one leg of the trip wouldn’t accept luggage over #50 at all. Fabulous, we were #10 under on one case, #2 on the other two – excellent!
OK, we’re all ready. All packed, weighed, I’ve gone over the list of what I can and can’t take into the UAE to make sure I’m not taking any contraband in – I THINK I’m ready.