Jeremy Felt

Stuff Is Weight

Stuff is weight.

There’s a philosophy of life around that statement, one that I probably think about subscribing to, and one that I have often offered my amateur opinions on from time to time.

At the moment, however, I mean it in the most literal way.

Stuff is weight.

When we first left for Europe in April, I had the following in my bag:

  • 2 polo shirts
  • 4 t-shirts
  • 1 long sleeve shirt
  • 1 pullover
  • 1 heavy rain jacket
  • 1 pair of jeans
  • 1 pair light weight hiking pants
  • 1 pair hiking pants/shorts combo
  • 5 pairs long wool socks
  • 1 pair short wool socks
  • 4 pairs underwear
  • swim trunks
  • wool skull cap
  • rain/sun hat
  • 2 bandanas
  • 1 pair sandals
  • 1 pair hiking shoes

It’s almost laughable really. Depending on how you count, almost 30 items to cover 4 major parts of the body. Head, upper, lower, and feet. And we haven’t started talking about the toiletries, miscellaneous random bits, water, and food.

Right before we left, it was all necessary. Even though we had removed everything but the essentials, and even after hearing “no matter what you pack, you’ll only need half“, we thought we had been able to detach ourselves enough from our stuff to pack smart.

Seriously, we had just finished downsizing a household into a little over 9 or 10 Rubbermaid tubs, of course we knew how to cut out the unnecessary.

Fast forward a month to Tewkesbury, England as we relive the process. Prepared to ditch some of our all of a sudden unnecessary stuff on our wonderful friends to take home, we find ourselves doing the same dance.

“I’ll definitely start using this.” “We might need this after we’re done with the walk.”

Etc, etc.

We did good though. I sent back the heavy rain jacket (replaced by a new lighter weight wind/rain breaker), a polo shirt, a t-shirt, the long sleeve shirt, and the skull cap. Only the necessities were to remain.

Oh, necessities and jeans.

About our weakness for jeans. We knew they would be tossed sooner or later, definitely before the Camino, but we still insisted on wearing them while we had them. This lasted a handful of days after Tewkesbury. Once we had to walk around in the heat of Montpellier, any emotional attachment disappeared. When we left for Agde, the jeans stayed behind.

Which brings us to now. 3 days and 40 miles into the Camino de Santiago, each step with the full weight of our stuff on our backs. The definition of necessity has started to really show itself under pressure. I returned from the Correos a few hours ago, having hopefully filled out the correct paperwork in order for 3.43kg of our stuff to make its way back home.

What won’t I be missing? A pullover, the heavy hiking shorts/pants, another t-shirt, a pair of underwear, and the short wool socks.

Why won’t I be missing it?

Stuff is weight.

Responses and reactions


Almakaras replied on 

Carrying stuff is hard but parting with stuff is hard also.    But you can always replace if necessary later.

Good post - keep it up.   Hugs,   Alma

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