Stuff that occurs to me

All of my 'how to' posts are tagged here. The most popular posts are about blocking and private accounts on Twitter, also the science communication jobs list. None of the science or medical information I might post to this blog should be taken as medical advice (I'm not medically trained).

Think of this blog as a sort of nursery for my half-baked ideas hence 'stuff that occurs to me'.

Contact: @JoBrodie Email: jo DOT brodie AT gmail DOT com

Science in London: The 2018/19 scientific society talks in London blog post

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Preparing and packing for Wilderness 2019

Woohoo, this time next week I should be all packed and ready to go for the 9th Wilderness Festival. I last went in 2017 and am going again for the same reasons - it's lots of fun and my friend Dr Helen Pilcher is giving a talk on Saturday afternoon (4.30pm) in the Books Tent and it will be a lovely family (I'm Auntie Jo to the kids and Oddparent to her eldest) outing, hooray.

Last time I took the world's tiniest, lightest tent along with a sleeping bag and camping mat. It was a bit of a squash, so this time I've booked myself into 'boutique' camping (finally, glamping!) and will not have to bring the following items as they're already included.
  • Tent
  • Thing to sleep on
  • Duvet
  • Pillow
  • Towel
Once again I'm using a combination of Gmail, WorkFlowy, Dropbox and Evernote to organise myself because I need all the help I can get.

  • 1. Maps
  • 2. Software
    • 2a. Gmail
    • 2b. WorkFlowy
    • 2c. Dropbox
    • 2d. Evernote
  • 3. What I'm packing
  • 4. FAQs

1. Maps and useful documents
Annotated map, where the Info centre and meeting points are etc

PDF of camping and entrances

Stage times 2019

Environmental Policy 2019

There's info about my travel tickets and times, festival tickets, alternative travel arrangements including taxi numbers and the postcode for satnavs. I also have info about ISS passes as it's rather nice to be out with friends under an open sky and see the International Space Station pass by.

2. Software 
2a. Gmail All emailed tickets and info are in a Gmail folder called Wilderness 2019. This has been synced so I can access it on my phone and I've opened all the emails on m phone and told them to 'show images'. There's a high chance that before I leave the house (night before) I'll re-do this and take some screenshots of tickets and stuff just in case.  

2b. WorkFlowy I've been using this for years for pretty much everything. It's a list-making marvel which makes it easy to add, move, mark as done or delete new items. If you start making a list and realise you want to add in subsections it's easy, you can just add a heading and indent anything below it (and you can click and drag to move things between headings or between levels of indentation). You can have a go of it yourself here. For Wilderness I'm using it specifically for my Master Packing List so that I can pick out items that might be relevant for a few days away in a field. The WorkFlowy app is also on m phone and sync'd but I'm just using it on the desktop for this. I've transferred the relevant items to Evernote and put check boxes next to them (see below).  

2c. Dropbox I have the app on my phone, behind an additional password, sync'd. All the files I need for Wilderness (stage times and maps PDFs etc) are in there. For extra usefulness I activate settings that will let me access the files offline. Relevant bits can also be enlarged and saved as screenshots and stored in a cameraroll album.  

2d. Evernote This is quite like WorkFlowy but with pictures. You can very easily paste in images and use colour and change the font size etc. This acts as my main one-page info.
  • At the top is stuff I still need to do or buy
  • ...or print
  • 1. Travel Times
  • 2. Tickets
    • 2a. Travel tickets info
    • 2b. Festival tickets info
    • Barcode of festival ticket order
    • Screenshot of main map
  • 3. Taxi numbers just in case
  • 4. Packing list
    • Wilderness' lost property form link just in case 
Here's what the packing list looks like.

3. What I'm packing / to-do list
And here's the actual packing list of what I'm taking. I don't have any prescribed medication but if you do don't forget that, and obviously if you're not glamping you might need a tent, groundsheet, camping mat, sleeping bag and something pillow-ish not to mention a towel. Or a mallet and tent pegs. Also I'm a woman so chaps reading this might want to have a think about blokier items to pack.

3.1 To-do a day or two before
  • Print information and maps
  • Charge up phone charger(s), ensure right cables for packing
  • Check e-tickets are sync'd on phones, screenshots in album, Dropbox sync'd
  • Buy things I need to buy
3.2 Hardware
  • Rucksack to put everything in
  • Day bag to have stuff I need when away from tent
  • Charger + cable (plug probably not a lot of use but you never know (works on trains)) 
  • Torch / headtorch and spare batteries - keep with you so that you can return to your tent after dark with ease
  • Plastic bags - to wrap stuff in and for putting used clothes etc in.
  • Vaguely wondering if I'll regret not buying walkie talkies
3.3 Outside
I'll be spending time away from my tent so need to be comfortable
  • Plastic ground sheet - anything to sit on in case grass is damp. A plastic bag would do
  • Sun cream - weather's gonna weather
  • Anti-bite cream - especially for evenings out
  • Hat / sunglasses as suits
  • Re-useable water bottle (a 'Misc' item but for the daybag)
3.4 Clothing
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • T-shirts
  • Trousers / jeans (or shorts, skirts or dresses if that's your thing)
  • Jumper (can get cooler in evening)
  • Jacket (warm / waterproof)
  • Spare shoes / Wellington boots / flip flops / sandals
  • Pyjamas or nightdress
3.5 Ablutions / health / comfort
  • Toothbrush / paste
  • Wet wipes
  • Liquid soap
  • Deodorant / scent
  • Tampons / liners
  • Nail clippers, scissors, tweezers
  • OTC meds like ibuprofen or dioralyte
  • A bit of talcum is always walcum
  • Ear plugs if your camp site isn't that quiet
  • Plasters
  • Spare insoles for added comfort
  • Hair stuff - clips, comb
3.6 Misc
  • Snacks / sweets / chewing gum - if you're leaving on Monday you'll need to pick up some portable snacks on the Sunday as the site will be closed and you'll be hungry
  • Cash (there are 2 ATMS on site)
  • Re-usable water bottle for day bag
  • Wallet
  • Keys
  • Pen / pencil
  • Notebook
  • Reading material - kindle or book 
  • Bunting - this is Wilderness you understand
I'm not packing any exciting outfits as I'm not really the demographic for that but that would probably go in Clothing. There are people who seriously dress up at the festival and bring colourful hats and headdresses. Not me :)

 Above is what the INFORMATION TENT looks like. Lot of bunting there. I want to live in this tent.

4. FAQs
Cash machines: there are 2 ATMS on site (see annotated map)

Family friendly: it's very family friendly. See the bit about trolleys below too.

First aid tent: if you're a bit under the weather (see annotated map)

Food: excellent, not cheap (though General Shop has basic snacks and cooking stuff), ubiquitous
& Water: free, several taps on site (see annotated map), bring a re-usable bottle

Information tent: where you can buy programmes and find out about timing changes and other stuff (see annotated map, it's pretty much in the middle)

Lockers: they have them. You can also charge your phone in them. I didn't investigate cost cos didn't need them last time.

Loos: very nice, usually have mirrors in, mildly posh. You can pay extra for a Loowatt loo which is fancier but don't think you'd need to

Meeting point: by the entrance to family camping, used for several events

Phones 1
Recharge: see bit on lockers above

Phones 2
Switch off cellular data: you won't need 3G or higher, or wifi, for telephone and text, only for internet. Keeping it mostly switched off will preserve your battery life and data use but you can text or ring your friends. I'm with people who have iPhones so I'll switch off iMessage on mine and suggest similar (Settings > Messages) as sending via iMessage involves data and isn't necessary. Just make sure SMS/MSS is on.

You'll need to switch data back on again to send tweets or instagrams or to share pictures via text. I had excellent 3G and general O2 text / call signal throughout the festival. It struggled a little on the last day (when everyone is packing up and arranging to meet people I suppose) but I didn't really need it then. Also for checking the weather app!

Shop: There is a general store that sells all sorts of useful stuff. Get there early if you need serious stuff like camping gear. They also sold spring onions last time I was there. Don't think they sold many but I like the idea that someone had some with their bacon and sausage campfire barbecue arrangement. (Soft drinks, sun lotion, lighters, stoves, sleeping bags, ground sheets, tent pegs, toothpaste, the usual).

Snacks for Monday: if you're leaving by coach or bus etc on Monday grab some snacks on Sunday from the general store or get some toast or something from someone to carry with you. Everyone's shutting down on Monday and there isn't necessarily time to decamp / pack and fetch food before getting to the pickup point. If you can pack something that won't go off without refrigeration before Mon 5 Aug I recommend it.

Trolleys: can be hired in advance or at the entrance to your camp to help you transport your stuff to wherever you park your tent. From Friday evening you can then hire these trolleys overnight or for the weekend to wheel your small children around in.

Twitter / Instagram: @WildernessHQ for both

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