moving

Moving to Montreal: Here is my minimalist packing list by Jessica Lee


One of the things I discovered while I was backpacking is that I can definitely live with less items than I realize. I have so much stuff in Toronto, but actually, I think I only use about 5 percent of all I own once a week. This is because I have a lot of books and movies and CDs that don't get a lot of use. So in true minimalist fashion, I'm moving to Montreal and I'm only bringing these few items with me.

I think I'm under 100 items, which is pretty exciting because for the first time, I'm a true minimalist.



The idea behind having less stuff is so I can spend more time and money on things that matter to me. For example, because I have so little luggage, I can carry all my things with me walking everywhere instead of spending money on a cab to move things if I need to move. Also, it takes less time to pack and to keep track of.

Anyway, here is my list:
1. Shorts x2
2. Long sleeved shirt
3. Tank top
4. Lounge shorts
5. t-shirt for sleeping in x2
6. Dresses x 5
7. Swim suit
8. Hoodie
9. Lounge pants
10. Microfiber towel
11. Sweater that goes with my entire wardrobe (see how functional it is?)


12. $10 sneakers purchased in Australia (these will be discarded when they get old and grungy, making room in my luggage, but absolutely necessary because I need close-toed shoes for swing dancing and also for hiking to climbing sites)
13. Red flats (matches with my entire wardrobe and professional enough for office life)
14. Birkenstocks (comfy and somewhat more polished-looking than flip flops for days when I want my toes to feel the wind)
15. Flip-flops that I will throw away when they get old but essential for gross showers, swimming and camping

Make-up:
I kept make-up simple but only brought things I would use on a daily basis. I don't usually travel with a lot of make-up but since I'm staying in Montreal for a while, I do want to have fun sparkly things to put on my face when I go out and I don't want to buy new things when I have make-up already.


Toiletries:
I brought big-sized toiletries since I won't be moving around a lot. What's important though is that everything fits inside a hanging toiletries bag for easy mobility.



Climbing gear: I'm going to be spending a lot of time climbing in Montreal and surrounding areas like Val David, but I'm only going to be bringing one climbing outfit because laundry machines exist and because I want to be as light as possible.


For entertainment and other gear, I have one book, a leather-bound journal, a lap top and charger, cell phone and charger and DSLR and charger. And of course, my wallet and passport.

Everything fits inside these three bags. The knapsack will be handy if I decide to get a bike in Montreal and the black purse will be my day bag. I'm also bringing a sleeping bag because I will be camping for a few days.

I've never had this little stuff before while transitioning to a new city, but I will let you know how it goes. Part of me feels like I don't have enough, but I also hate carrying around too many things.

Also, I know there's lots of cute boutique/vintage shops around Montreal so I'm probably going to shop a little, especially to replace my favourite rainbreaker from Simons which got stolen in Copenhagen that I bought in Montreal last year.

New adventures in Montreal by Jessica Lee


My bags are packed, I'm heading on a camping trip to Val David, Quebec, tomorrow, and then staying in Montreal indefinitely.

I'm hoping to improve my French, take in the Jazz Fest, and get involved in the communities in Montreal, in particular, the swing dancing scene, coffee shops and the rock climbing scene. I'm sad to say goodbye to my friends in Toronto and all the new people I've met these past few months. It feels like every time I get settled into a city and really get to know some people, I am moving again. But I mean, it's self-imposed, so I can't really complain too much. I have itchy, traveller's feet. I need to change my environment every once in a while. One day, I will pick a nice city, marry a charming man, buy a house and settle down, but right now is not the time.

I need to keep moving.

Right now, it feels exactly like how it felt when I graduated high school, like the possibilities are endless. It's a peaceful, liberating feeling. I am not quite sure how my summer will turn out, but I will keep you posted.

See you all on the other side!

Oh, and if you're curious about the photo, I took it a few years ago in Indonesia. You can read about it here.