TIME TO SPRING INTO ACTION
Now that winter has ended, spring is here and it is time to “spring-up” to the activities that we were so reluctant to do. The entrance of spring brings more daylight and so, it’s time to live life to the full - there;s never a better time than Spring!
Everything comes alive and so, shouldn’t you? The otherwise naked bare trees start springing up leaves. Budding flowers like stars putting up a colourful performance. The scent in the air is sweet; the landscape becomes breathtaking. Hibernating animals come out of their winter sleep, and when I say hibernation, I don’t mean the American grizzly bears. Yes! It' surprisingly common in our own backyard. In Australia, four species of pygmy possum, a handful of bat species and the short-beaked echidna are all known to hibernate. Well, you are not going to see them from your apartment room, are you? Unless you watch David Attenborough, on the National Geographic Channel on Foxtel, but that’s not exactly exciting at all, is it? You got to be out there, and I don’t mean in the city, I mean out there. If you live away from the main city, that is, a little more country or up in the highlands area, you might catch a glimpse of the pygmy possum while doing gardening in your own backyard.
Talking about gardening . . . early SPRING is also the best time to get your sloggers or gummies on. Pick up the garden trowel, spade, fork and shovel - Slip, slap, slop the sunscreen, put on your garden hat and get into it. Gardening in your yard! There is no better time than to plant flowers, grow vegetables or get rid of those nasty weeds from the winter just gone by. Roses are at their best in spring and when the soil warms up, it’ll be a good time to sow summer veggies such as beans, sweet corn, pumpkins, zucchinis, cucumbers and melons. If you are not a “Green Thumb”, and gardening is not your “cuppa tea”, then it’s alright. I am not too much into gardening myself. For me, I would put on my gumboots, strap on my “Buff Headwear”, which I think looks "cooler" than a hat. I then slap on some white stripes on my face, like Sylvester Stallone in “Rambo”, before he’s ready for action. Uhmm... the white stripes are actually my sunscreen. I then tuck my secateurs and water bottle in my gardening tool belt. On one hand, my faithful Garden shears and on the other my Garden rake. Now I am truly ready for some serious pruning and cleaning up around the garden.
Morning jogs or walk are also great this time of the year. The sun is out early, it’s not that freezing or hot. It’s just perfect for the imperfect person like me. I'm planning to lose a bit around the waist, so I’ll get up around 5.30am and strap up another pair of Buff Headwear. I got me a few of the Buffs as I can use them for any occasion, seriously, they're great. I use Buff to keep warm when there’s a chill and to look cool when it’s hot. I also use it in the evening when I dress to kill or when I’m out in the wilderness in search of a thrill. Anyway, then I slip on my IZIPIZI sunglasses, strap on my CAMELBAK Hydration Pack and finally, I put on my black Kreafunk Headphone - Off I ride on my bike or at times, I jog.
Then comes the weekends! Nothing is better than spring weekends. I would go hiking, camping or fishing with some of my buddies. Simply love sitting in the midst of nature, absorbing the beauty that Mother Nature herself has constructed. Turquoise coloured water rushing hurriedly downstream, complementing the colour of the sky above. Cotton floss clouds of white randomly plot the otherwise, clear blue sky. The sound – absolute SILENT - if not for the chirping of birds, singing in perfect harmony with the crickets and other insects, like an enchanted orchestra. Get the picture?
I am usually well-equipped when I go on a hike, camping or fishing. It’s always best to be equipped as you don’t want to be uncomfortable or caught without the bare necessities. Initially, when I first started to go on hikes, camping or fishing trips, I would get all excited. I would hastily pack my stuff without giving second thoughts. Then when I was out there in the wilderness, I'd have big regrets for not bringing this or that.
Take it from me, if you are excited about your first hiking, camping or fishing trip, just pause for a minute and think. What should I bring along for the camp/hike?
If we could, we would bring our whole house in a backpack. It would be comfortable and convenient to do that, but unfortunately, it won’t fit. So what should you bring? You don’t want to be struggling with a backpack that weighs a ton, nor do you want to be caught out with not having your essentials.
So take a step back and think. What are essential to me? Spread all your items that you would like to have for the trip on the floor of your bedroom. Now gather them to different groups such as:
‘NOT LEAVING THE HOUSE WITHOUT IT’ - GROUP
1 First of all, take the most important items.
If your camp/hike destination is overseas (Make sure you print multiple copies of your documents and put them in your day bag and backpack, so you have copies, if you lose your bag):
- Tickets (Air, train or bus)
- Health and travel insurance
- Debit/credit card
- Prescription medicines
- A spare pair of glasses/contact lens if you use them
- A small amount of cash just in case
- International driving license
‘MUST HAVE’ - GROUP
2 Now you need some clothing essentials that will get you through weekly
- Underwear X 7
- Socks X 3
- Swim Attire X 2
- Shorts X 2
- Trousers X 2
- T-shirts X 3
- Long sleeve Fleece X 2
- Hoodie X 2
- Waterproofs X 1
- Trainers/hiking shoes
‘GROOMING’ - GROUP
3 Toiletries only what you need
- Sanitary items (Ladies)
- Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
- Shampoo / conditioner 2 in 1
- Sun cream
- After-sun / moisturiser (for that deep burn)
- Lip balm
- Nail clippers
- Insect repellent
- Bite cream
- Hair bands
SAFETY & COMFORT
4 Must have Miscellaneous
- Safety Kit / Survival Kit
- Torch/head torch
- Buffwear (for all situations)
- Sleeping bag
- Travel pillow
- Book to read
- Playing cards to pass the time
- Swiss army knife
- Duct tape (for repairs)
- Pen / Diary / journal
- Travel wallet/money belt
- Waterproof cover for bag
- Tea Coffee bags
- Soup Sachets
- Cooking Stove
- Survival Knife
Now that you have listed and grouped all the items in order of requirements, go through it one more time just to see that you have not left anything out. If you are satisfied, start packing. Botanex.com.au is a site that I would really recommend. They have many cool items, but what’s more, they have stuff in there that have multiple functions. So instead of bringing five individual items, you just need one that does it all. That will truly cut down your load. What’s more, all transactions made through the site are really safe and you will get your orders mailed to you, in no time at all. When I bought my gear online, I received my order in a couple of days.
Well, I do hope you enjoy your spring like I enjoy mine. Life is only lived once so get out there and see it. Stay away from the four walls that surround you or that tablet screen that hypnotise you. Oh one more thing, if you are driving to your destination in a WD4x4, make sure you get Bog Out. Believe me; it will get you out of trouble when you need it most. Add that to your ‘NOT LEAVING THE HOUSE WITHOUT IT’ – GROUP and have lots of fun.