31 August 2011

All Stars Guest Post: Laurie (What's In My Bag)

This is an All Stars guest post from Laurie, who writes Plannerisms and contributes on Philofaxy.

Many thanks to Imy for letting me do an All Stars guest post!!

Here's what's in my bag! You're not going to believe the amount of stuff I carry around with me on a daily basis!!

First, the bag: it's a Filofax Finchley expandable tote, in its expanded state. You can read more details about this bag in my post about it on Bagsey blog.  In this expanded state this bag can hold A4 file folders, that's how big it is. Notice it looks a little stuffed.

Here's my bag open with everything in it:
Below is my bag and everything I carry in it on a daily basis! Yes it's an insane amount of stuff. I'll go row by row and explain what each thing is and why I need to lug it all around with me! 
The short answer is, I live in Jakarta, Indonesia so I carry a lot of things I would not need to have on my person constantly if I lived in the US or UK.

Below is the top row of stuff I carry in my bag. The first item is reading materials, in this case a Science News magazine. I spend a lot of time in the car as a passenger--traffic here is so insane everyone has to have drivers, which is not nearly as fun as it sounds. Think loss of independence and aggravation when the driver is not there to pick you up.  Anyway, I never leave the house without something to read, because it takes at least 45 minutes to get anywhere at all, even the grocery store, and often longer when traffic is gridlocked. The next item is my planner, an Extra Large Moleskine 18 month weekly notebook (which you can read about in my post here) in a Nubuck leather cover from Dodo Pad (which you can read about in my post here.)  The XL Mole measures 7.5 by 10 inches, giving you an idea of the size of it.  It's kinda huge.
Next to my planner are a Sharpie pen, Bic 4 color pen (traditional colors) and a Bic 4 color pen (fashion colors, read my post about it here).  Next to my pens is a map of Jakarta that I never leave home without.

Below is the middle row of things I carry in my bag. The black thing on the left is my awesome wallet that my sister gave me years ago. It has a metal frame and latch so it opens out flat like a book, has loads of cards and currency pockets, and is by far the best wallet I've ever had. Even though I got the pink Finsbury Filofax wallet before it was discontinued, I'm waiting for this awesome wallet to completely die before I switch over into it.

Next is my Nokia phone, which you can read my post about here.  Next is my beautiful personal size Finsbury in Aqua (read about it here) as my Medical Filofax. After my daughter had a couple of medical emergencies here I realized I can't leave the house without my Medical Filo.

The brown leather book next to my Aqua Filo is my Moleskine Info book (see my post about it here) in its Renaissance Art leather cover (see post here).  I write all Indonesia-specific information here including contacts, doctor and dentist numbers, school info, restaurants, friends, etc. This is a great way to consolidate all local information so it doesn't get lost and I don't have to wonder where I wrote it.  Next is my makeup case containing lots of lip balms and glosses, comb, mirror and paracetamol. Next is a tube of Avon SuperShock lip gloss. I love the gloss, but why does the tube have to be so gigantic? Next is my soft case containing my Bloc sunglasses I bought in Scotland back in 2001, they are practically indestructible.

Below is a bunch of other gear I have to carry everywhere. A bottle of water, because it's hot and I'm always thirsty. Sunscreen and mosquito repellent, because we are so close to the equator we'll burn in just a few minutes without sunscreen, and because daytime mosquitoes carry dengue fever here so I have to always have mosquito repellent for myself and my kids. Antibacterial hand wipes because it's dirty. Children's fever-reducer medicine sachets, because if we are stuck in traffic for hours and someone is ill with a fever (which has happened already more than once!) I need to have meds with me.  Immodium, because tummy trouble is all too common here, and again I don't want to be stuck in traffic for hours and have a major tummy issue. (Hasn't happened yet, luckily!!)  And tissues, because the pollution gives me sinus problems and I'm constantly blowing my nose.
At the bottom are Ricola lozenges for throat irritation caused by the pollution, and food bars to have something to eat in case I or my kids get hungry in the car.

As you might imagine, I'm looking forward to moving away from here next year, for lots of reasons including the fact that I won't have to lug most of this stuff around with me anymore!

Thank you very much to Laurie for doing a What's in my bag post for my blog for the Philofaxy All Stars tour, i feel very lucky to have all these great people posting on my blog it makes me happy!!! :-) <3 xxx



  1. Wow, that IS a lot of stuff. I thought I was bad. ;) I have to say, you don't make it sound too appealing. I can cross Jakarta off on my places to see. (It wasn't there anyway, but good to know!)

  2. Now we know why you need such a big strong bag!!

    And you have solved a mystery about your phone I knew there was a post on it, but I was looking on Plannerisms for it... didn't think to look on Philofaxy ! Doh!!

  3. kanalt I'm afraid I've put a rather negative spin on Jakarta. It's definitely not to my liking, but there are people who like it here. To be honest, it's not a tourist destination at all. There are things to do in Indonesia, but they are elsewhere like the beaches on Bali or the rainforests of Sumatra.

  4. I love the colour of the Dodo Pad!

  5. My sister pointed out to me that I cast Jakarta in a very negative light in this post. I have to admit I was having a "down" day when I wrote this! But, there are lots of good things about living here.

    People are very VERY nice, and friendly, and they adore children which is great when I'm out with my kiddos. When the kids are loud or hyper they get adoring grins, and never any nasty looks!

    You can buy pretty much whatever you want, except for Filofaxes sadly, but there are similar Japanese binders that lots of people use so I frequently see binders in use out and about, which is exciting! But as an example, I bought a $1500 treadmill and had it delivered to my house, and I haven't lived in many countries where I can do that!

    The medical care here is good, and way cheaper than the equivalent care would be in the US.

    Even though there's not tons to do in Jakarta itself, Indonesia has some of the best beaches, scuba diving, rainforests and wildlife in the world.

    I live in a huge house, and I have my own swimming pool which I can swim in every day of the year because it's hot all the time. And I don't even have to take care of it because I have a live-in groundskeeper who takes care of it for me!

    So, don't feel sorry for me for living here, I'm living it up! ;D

  6. I like that bag. I am going to recommend this page to my sister and I am sure that she is going to love it.
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