I hate flying. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not afraid to fly, I quite like airports, and I’ve even grown accustomed to the frustrating security process. But the airlines’ ever-changing baggage allowance rules are enough to make my blood boil.
Considering that I’m on the road full time and have to pack clothes for all types of climates, I travel very light. My clothes and toiletries go in a 22” rollerboard. Even though it is carry-on size, I check it, because I also have to carry a good deal of photography and electronic equipment to do my job. These items cannot be checked – the risk of theft would be too high – so I carry them in a medium size backpack, which is my one free carry-on item.
Over the past few years, the allowable weight of carry-ons has changed drastically. Most airlines now allow carry-on bags to weigh either 10 kilos (22 pounds) or seven kilos (14.4 pounds). Because my camera body, lenses, laptop, and assorted peripheral equipment always put me over the weight limit, I am constantly stressed out when checking into a flight, scared that one day they will weigh my backpack and force me to check it.
I’m happy to report that I’ve finally found a solution, the Ultimate Everyday Carry Jacket with hidden pockets from Global Travel Clothing. The pockets in this jacket let me carry a wide variety of gear that I would normally pack in my backpack. Soft lined pockets keep items like phones and glasses from getting scratched, and include a built-in glass cleaning cloth. Additionally, a series of hidden pockets safely stash valuables like a wallet, passport, plane ticket, and keys. Read More
Click on title to view photo in large format: Nuns share a mid-morning meal at the Tha Kya Di Thar Nunnery on Sagaing Hill near Mandalay, Myanmar. Each day at 10:45 a.m., the nuns gather in the communal hall to sing songs before sitting down to eat. Their performance is open to the public, and donations are always welcome. After their brief concert, visitors are welcome to walk around the grounds and visit Read More
Click on title to view photo in large format: View from U Min Thonze Cave Pagoda over Sagaing Hill, located on the opposite side of the Irrawaddy River from Mandalay, Myanmar. Only a handful of monasteries and pagodas existed when this area was the capital of Sagaing Kingdom, from 1315 to 1364. Today Sagaing Hill is part of Mandalay, and the entire area is covered in nunneries, monasteries, and pagodas. As the area developed Read More
Click on title to view photo in large format: Weirawsana Jade Pagoda near Mandalay, Myanmar, is covered in jade worth $15 million. Inside the pagoda, jade Buddha statues occupy niches facing the four cardinal directions. The government of Myanmar represents it as the largest jade pagoda in the world, and the only one in the world built entirely of the precious stone. The 75-foot high structure was begun in 2012 and only recently completed. Funds for Read More
Click on title to view photo in large format: Bridal couple celebrate their wedding day with a visit to Kuthodaw Complex in Mandalay, Myanmar. This famous site is often described as containing the largest book in the world. After my first circuit of the site, I was mystified. I saw absolutely no evidence of a giant book. Further inquiry solved the mystery. Read More