Empty-handed, Open-hearted. Travelling lighter...

Trip Start Dec 10, 2011
Trip End Sep 29, 2012

Loading Map
Map Options
Show trip route
Hide lines
Where I stayed
HostelTrail Popayan
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Colombia  ,
Friday, March 23, 2012

I have finally REALLY downsized what I am carrying in my backpack thanks to some help from Australian Nadine, picture of some of the stuff I am leaving here in Popayan... loads more already left behind. Needed to lighten up as I would like to be ready to travel even further south in Colombia.

I have got rid of a lot of gear over the last three months, some in Costa Rica, some in Venezuela (but not much!), my two Spanish language books I accumulated, although I wish I had them now but they were heavy and some London notebooks, pens I bought as gifts from the UK for the local kids. 

In Colombia, some stuff in Cartagena to the ladies at the hostal I stayed at for a long time, some of my clothes to the people in the mountains of Medellin at the volunteering project I was at. Some stuff including a lovely red dress (Laura and Claire you know what I mean), to two German girls who got all their gear soaked after a huge rainfall so I kindly donated it to them. My travel hairdryer has been left in Salento at La Serrana hostal (it's now hanging up in the female only dorm room) for the love of all girls travelling who need a bit of luxury. It was hard for me to leave some of this gear, I was attached to it, but that's just plain silly it's just material stuff and it was weighing me down, plus the rule is ... 'if you're not using it, why carry it?!'.

I am not sure what it weighs now but I am sure a lot less than the 18 kg I set out with at the beginning of my trip, I am also going to send stuff home next month when my Dad comes out to meet me. The true test is Nadine from Australia who inspired me to travel lighter, has said we WILL be walking from the hostal to the bus terminal with all our gear so let's see if I can comfortably carry the rucksack and my daypack whilst navigating the chaotic roads, rivers flowing down the gutters (it is rainy season now) and uneven pavements and roads.

A very good friend of mine sent me a cool little reading and I am going to copy it here for food for thought...

I'll let you know how I go carrying my smaller house on my back!

Empty-Handed, Full-Hearted
Posted: 16 Mar 2012 04:49 PM PDT
Post written by Leo Babauta.

We often load ourselves up when we travel, because we want to be prepared for various situations. This burden of being prepared leaves us with our arms full, unable to receive whatever is there when we arrive.

It leaves us tired from carrying, so that we are not happy when we meet someone new on our travels.

What if we traveled with empty hands, ready to embrace new experiences, receive new foods, touch new people?

We might feel less prepared when we leave, but the preparedness is an illusion.

Stuff doesn’t make us prepared. Having empty hands but a heart that is full of love leaves us prepared for anything.

This doesn’t just apply to taking a trip, but to living each day. Each day is a journey, and we load ourselves up with material possessions, with tasks and projects, with things to read and write, with meetings and calls and texts. Our hands are full, not ready for anything new.

Drop everything, be open to everything. Enter each day empty-handed, and full-hearted.

from zenhabits
Slideshow Report as Spam

My Review Of The Place I Stayed

Loading Reviews
  • Your comment has been posted. Click here or reload this page to see it below.

  • Please enter a comment.
  • Please provide your name.
  • Please avoid using symbols in your name.
  • This name is a bit long. Please shorten it, or avoid special characters.
  • Please enter your email address to receive notification
  • Please enter a valid email address


Emily white on

Loved this blog. Very inspiring.

greekcypriot on

It is indeed a very interesting and inspiring article. I will share it with some friends today. Thanks for the very interesting as always entries Charlotte.

charlotte on

Thank you Emily, Thank you Popi... Thank you Claire for forwarding the zen habits to me, I already feel lighter and ready for more adventures and opening my heart and mind to the wonderful people I meet

Use this image in your site

Copy and paste this html: