amw (amw) wrote in glimpseatmyday,

What's in my bag? Shenzhen, China - 2019-08-10

It's the peak of summer here in Shenzhen. I recently started a new job about 12km away, which i am stubbornly biking to every day.

The commute is about an hour each way, and i carry this pack Monday to Friday. What's inside?

Tada! 🎉 The bag is pretty clean, mainly because i want it to be as light as possible.

We have a bandana and sunblock. For some reason i never wear these on my work commute, but on the weekends i always tie the bandana on my head and slather my shoulders and face in sunscreen.

My new job issued me a Macbook, which doesn't have an old-fashioned USB port, so i bought this USB3-to-USB2 connector to plug in a mouse when traveling. I guess i forgot to take it out of my bag after the last business trip. I also have a USB stick, which i only use to go to copy shops when i need to get a document scanned. Plus, of course, there is the ubiquitous external battery. All the kids in China carry these around so they can play games on their phone. I just have it for emergencies if i forget to charge one day.

My wallet is the most useless thing in this bag. It is packed with cash that i haven't touched in a year or more. Literally every vendor in China accepts Alipay, so i use my phone to pay for everything. At work when i go out for lunch, i leave my bag by my desk and just take my phone. I should probably leave my wallet at home and just take a backup ATM card.

All those plastic bags are because summer in southern China means typhoons and tropical storms. Everything you see here is wrapped in a plastic bag before going into the pack, just in case there is a surprise storm. I learned my lesson a couple years ago when my passport was almost destroyed by the rain.

So what do i add to this bag on my weekday commute? A large bottle of water, office keycard, change of underwear, jeans and a work shirt. Occasionally i toss in a banana for breakfast. In heavy rain i have also been putting my sneakers and socks in the bag and i ride/wade to work in flip-flops.

On weekend treks there tends to be fruit, snacks and more water or ice tea.

Any time i travel overnight, i just put everything in there (passport, Kindle, clothes and toiletries).

And that is my bag.

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