Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Two Essential Packing List For Studying Abroad.





You're leaving the country. You may not be starting a new life, but you are starting a new chapter of you life.

You're gonna need to bring a lot of stuff and be able to condense it into a small space.
Why?

You won't have a giant house to store all your junk. You only need to bring essentials.

Airline bag fees are expensive. Even if you've got the money...Why possibly spend 100's of extra dollars to haul some shit across the world that you may never use.

After months of being abroad and traveling, Both heavy and light...I've come up with TWO packing list.

The first, being your initial departure list and the second, being your travel destination bag.
Here's what you need for your Initial Departure Packing list





First thing I can't stress enough for success is a Cell Phone
The Importance Of A Cellphone
I  addressed this in a earlier post. It is in your best interest to get a inexpensive unlocked cell phone on your own terms as opposed to struggling to get one while you are struggling in a new country
I saved a lot of expenses on miscellaneous other things and was able to spring for a inexpensive 100 dollar android phone and pay 10Euro for a prepaid service with a Data plan.
Its not hard to find a inexpensive/non contract service plan abroad.

Now we can get into the hard packing. I packed one big suitcase, a duffel bag  and a large sized backpack
Ill address the backpack an its importance later.


2 weeks of socks, underwear, undershirts
1.5 (10) shirts
4 pairs of pants
2 pairs of shorts
2 hoodies
2 coats. ( Make sure at least one coat is water resistant
Set of Gloves and beanies ( Real winter gloves)

If you are going somewhere warm or for a summer semester. You can trade the coat and go with a windbreaker. The gloves can also be traded for something else.
This should only take about half of your suitcase if everything is rolled.
This allows you to have enough clothes to last you at least 6 months and swap everything out. No one should even notice you don't have 10 wardrobes to choose from.

You should also be prepared to share washing machines and or have no drier. I've noticed that in many countries, even "1st world" don't use driers as much. 
But if you have a good schedule, you'll never run out of clothes or have nothing to wear.


With you extra space. you should be able to fit 3 pairs of shoes.
1 of these pairs should be running shoes.
1 should be a sort of dress shoe if you can spring for it

Suit jacket or Blazer or dress clothes.
This is one of those things you will regret not bringing.
Not every place is gonna let you in  wearing jeans and a sweatshirt and not many random bum students will have clothes like this.
You wanna set yourself apart and have some style.



Cosmetic bag
- Toothbrush, Razor, Ect  whatever you need
I actually suggest that you don't bring a stockload of your favorite products. A lot of liquids wont make it through the airport and they take up space. You will be able to buy them in your new home.

Laptop.
Portable hard drive  - Its not the best idea to download/torrent in Germany
Portable speakers - Unless you plan to shell out money for a TV. You will not have one in your room. You shouldn't need one either.. go outside.
*But I feel like a decent pair of portable speakers will raise your quality of life. You might invite a girl over and want to play some music. You might just want to watch a show on your laptop and want more sound. I bought a pair of these Logitech Portable Speakers years ago for less than 30 dollars. They came with a case that could fit in a backpack. Sadly they no longer sell them

Earphones
Protection Earplugs : Clubs get loud..these are barely noticeable. I valued my hearing . You might be in clubs and bars a lot. The people living around you might be loud as shit and you wanna tune it out.
Earplugs should be higher on the list..You won't realize how well these come in handy

Plug Converters.
such as USD/Euro converter
You're gonna feel stupid if you think ever place has the same sort of power outlets, and the little money you have will be ripped from you if you try to buy these in the airport.

A Digital Camera.
I happen to be a camera enthusiast and wanted a high tech camera for my travels. But I wasnt gonna lug around a bulky DSLR.
I bought one of these Nikon p7000 years ago and I've won photo contest with the pictures I've taken with it.
For the average person. A basic camera will be enough for you. Camera technology is so up to date that you can do everything with damn near any camera.

Haha. You think I'm joking..Buy yourself a big box of condoms. Sure..you might not use them all. But better safe than sorry. I bought a giant box of condoms and put them in baggies to save space. 
You're gonna be traveling a lot. Meeting girls left and right in countries you've never been before. Be honest with yourself. You're not gonna buy condoms when you get of the train in a new city. just keep them in your travel pack at all times




The Alpha Playboy by Christian McQueen  Is  a book that has an in dept look at style for young males coming up in the world.
 I wish I had it as a resource years ago and suggest you take a look at it.

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Importance of Learning the Language



Time and time again,  people travel to a country and don't have a clue what the locals are saying.
They might be talking behind your back about how horrible your clothes are.
You might be 45 seconds from being robbed.
A simple misunderstanding might lead to a loss of money.
They might even be complementing you.

Unless you  learned the foreign language in in high school or college. It's not expected that you will know the language fluently.
But, that doesn't mean you should make it harder on yourself.

Not only are there paperback phrasebooks for every language, but with the internet, you can find online phrasebooks.

Ex.

Omniglot.com - Phrases by language

Wikitravel.org - Phrasebooks by language


Before I leave a country, I always  attempt to memorize the basics of a language or at least save the page in my phone so I can look at it later.


In many countries, the citizens will go out of their way to help you, for the simple fact that you attempt to try the language.
From Germany to Hungary, simply saying thank you and you're welcome in their language brightens their day.
*Parisians are often hostile to those who make no attempt to try their language.

Not everyone speaks English.
In many countries, if you plan to strike up a conversation with a girl on the street...be prepared for her to outright ignore you, for the simple fact that she has no idea what you're saying.

Don't believe me?
Try it yourself.

* Its been a while since I updated this. But new technology and websites have came out.
I've recently started reviewing and trying to refresh my Spanish.
Two great site for this are:

Memrise

This site is awesome for learning vocabulary.
Its a flash card style website that incorporates a game of raising plants into it.
You can easily search and find different lesson for almost any language you want to learn.
101 Essential Spanish words?  There's a program for that

DuoLingo
Has a similar principal to Memrise only it is much more grammar based.
through simple lesson plans and games you learn grammar structure at the same time as learning some vocab.
I find it to be a little more interactive that Memrise.
I would personally use Duolingo to start off. Once you get a decent grasp and go through the first couple levels. You can move to Memrise and get hardcore into Vocab

If you know any other sites like this. Feel free to post them in the comments or email

Christiania,Denmark: Where weed is cheaper than beer

The Green Light District..and other places


I happen to be in Copenhagen for a few days and caught some interesting sights.

It's not hard at all for a average male to see everything that Copenhagen has to offer in about 11 hours.
I spent two days there before heading to another city..and by the end of day one I was pretty much bored.

A couple things that might be worth your time are The Round Tower, Which is a tower built as a observatory in the 1600s.
Its got a long winding staircase like road that leads to the top of the tower


The  Rosenborg Castle
Is decent from the outside..but I wasn't paying the ridiculous fee to get inside it.
Instead I had a conversation with the Danish soldier guarding the building.
Of course he didn't talk back...but the least I could do was give him some company in the frigid weather.
Danish Peso ain't nothing to fuck with.


* The Danish actually use Krones


Little known fact...I had no idea, but Copenhagen has a side island where marijuana and whatnot is openly sold....