Do you know what poorpacking is?! Well, just like you, I still can not grasp the whole context of it but one thing’s for sure–I LOVE IT!
The first time I heard or read about “poorpacking” is while browsing through the Sole Sisters’ blog, a collection of stories and experiences of friends Chi Chi Bacolos and Lois Yasay as they travel in India and South East Asia for six months with P100,000 (give or take). I stumbled upon their blog by, wait. I can’t remember how I did. But yeah, I did.
Anyway, they are now back in the Philippines and they’re holding a photo exhibit and travel talk with other Filipino travelers and bloggers dubbed “From Glampackers to Poorpackers”. You see, before this epic trip, these two gals are hitting the road with their stilettos on, trolling around their matching luggages. But, as they embarked on this 6-month journey, they learned the true art of being “matipid” at “kuripot” (thrifty and, uhm, miser?!) for the sake of being able to explore South East Asia and all it has to offer. So, yeah, from being Glampackers, they became Poorpackers. And lived to tell the tale!
Chi Chi talked about how traveling changed her life. I liked her outlook, especially when she said that money comes and goes. but the experience you can have while traveling stays with you, together with the fond recollections of the friends you meet along the way. Despite the bumps (and accidents) they experienced on the road, Chi Chi exclaimed that given the chance, she would do everything all over again (even if she can’t undo her three ‘tattoos’ from Laos!)
Lois then talked about the reasons why we travel. There’s supposed to be five. Trav
elails (it’s a challenge!), meeting new people (from different places and different cultures), looking from the outside in (appreciating our own country in ways we didn’t realize before) and one more. Yes, I paid attention but I forgot the other one. Yep. Just one more because Lois’ 5th reason is left blank as she wanted us to make our own reason for traveling. Fair enough, I guess. Hehe
Apart from Chi Chi and Lois, other Pinay travel bloggers were present as well to talk about their own share of experiences while traveling. Nina Fuentes of justwandering.org is a prolific blogger and an awardee at that. I’ve been following her blog too (especially for budget monitoring and travel essentials) and I find her dolls especially cute. I soooo envied her when she watched Cirque du Soleil’s Varekai, not once but twice! I also knew about Bagan in Burma because of her.
Nina talked about the reasons that prevent us from traveling. Being a renowned travel blogger that she is, I find it weird that you know, she’s not really the typical traveler–going for many adventures and eager to socialize with other people. To top it off, she’s a self-confessed paranoid. I can’t imagine what she does while she’s traveling but I guess whatever it is, it must be really good coz she can’t get enough of it! Anyway, I didn’t think there were so much reasons why people don’t go on travel. I just usually blame it on money and time. :p
The final speaker, Monette Fernandez of flipn’travels.com, also shared her passion for traveling but centered on being a solo female traveler, which is something I aspire to be! I guess it’s true, what she said about feeling the stares of people once you walk down the street alone.
I experienced that, somewhat, when I went on my first solo backpacking trip to the Bicol Region. But it’s also amazing how people tend to lend extra hands to solo female travels. But, though we trust the people willing to help us, our guards must never be down and our gut feels and instincts should be factored in too!
Truth be told, it was while reading their blogs and that of Flipnomad that I seriously thought about extending my 28-day South East Asia trip. Well, yes, thought about it. After this event, I mustered some courage and decided to pry away Lois before moving on to another group of attendees. I basically said I’m the one who posted in FB that I would be traveling for 28 days around SEA (failed to tell her though that I lived up to not missing the exhibit and travel talk for the world).
Lois asked me how many countries and I said six. Then she immediately said, “Six countries, 28 days, that’s too short!” Well, yes. I agree with her. When I was planning this trip, I thought 28 days would be very long already. But, as I said, I agree with her that it is in fact, too short.
My friend Ate Abby who was with me, afterwards asked me why I am touring six countries in so short a time. “Why not pick one to three countries and just stay there for a while longer?” I replied simply with this: “I have been telling myself that I’d go here or that I’d go there. But the thing is, it never happened. So now, I’m going to all these places at one go. It’s just now that I realized how little time I have coz really, I thought it was sooo long already.” I didn’t know that South East Asia alone already has so much to offer so yeah, well. There’s always a next time for those that I’d be missing on this trip. *wink wink*
And for those who missed the Sole Sisters’ travel talk and photo exhibit (great pictures by the way!), don’t worry, you still have a chance to see their amazing photos and hear their wonderful stories and insights about travel. There’s two more chances actually. See the details on the poster. 🙂
Anyway, here’s to hoping I can go tomorrow and/or the 18th for another round of travel stories and tips! Not to mention a shot at those prices: Paccube being my favorite! Hehehe. 🙂
Well, that’s about it for now. Good mornight everyone! Maybe I’d be dancing the Americano craze in my dreams later. And because I don’t want to do it alone, I invite you to join me by watching the Sole Sisters’ Americano Dance Craze video here. (I think they’ll soon put up the one we did at the event.)
Happy dancing, er, wandering!