If You Need It, You Carry It

The first time Ron and I visited Moab, we pulled into town looking like identical Pigpens – remember that character from Peanuts – desperately in need of a shower after rolling out of Breckenridge without one following a Spartan Beast race.

What? We had to get to Arches, and we were losing daylight. It was still the same day, so it wasn’t THAT bad.

pack 1
Pre-shower. See? Not horrible, if you don’t look at our feet.

We also forgot to pack towels on that visit. So we dried off from our showers with those brown paper towels that come out of those automatic dispensers, one at a time, in perfect squares. You know – the ones with the zig-zag edges.

You could say we needed towels. But, you could also say we didn’t. Because, the KOA shower had those rough paper towels that never absorb any water whatsoever.

pack 2
Our adorable, bare-bones cabin in Moab.

As we get ready to leave for another road trip, this time with five kids, that “need/want” conversation is even louder because space is at a premium and weight is a factor. I mean, the Journey has proven how strong she is, but she hasn’t had to pull a trailer yet. We’re just trying to put her in the best position to succeed.

We’re bargaining needs and wants right down to extra hot chocolate packets. It’s getting real.

Each of us will only be bringing four outfits, max, as we rely on laundry services along the way to clean us up every few days. And, that clothing limit is why we’re so happy we get to pack for everyone – we’d have to double-check their packs anyway, for undies and socks, even if they did pack themselves.

For more reasons than we can imagine, this adventure will be so educational – starting with an immersion into minimalism. Do you need it?  Or do you want it?

They’ll have to ask themselves that right out of the chute, because this is the first adventure we’ve taken where they will each be carrying their own daypacks. It was time. And our two packs can only carry so many sweatshirts and snacks. With five kids, it gets to be a bit much.

pack 4
The maniacs.

So, they will be in charge of what they need each day. Of what they commit to carrying. And then adjusting if they misjudged. That’s how you learn, right?

I definitely did in Havasupai, when you couldn’t see any of my body, except my calves, around my pack. The kids won’t come close to this look, but they might feel that way. Unless they learn from it.

pack 5