By K.P. our resident food critic Paella is one of Spain’s national joys (as you probably know) and is hands down the one dish you HAVE to wrap your mouth…
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8 Things to pack for Europe 2022
How to avoid public pooping and other advice on packing
Josephine Ryan Murphy
You’ve got your Stoke passport ready, you’re shaking with excitement, but before you can begin your adventure comes the dreaded packing of the bag. We’re here to help. Let’s avoid tearfully sitting on your suitcase in a futile attempt to zip it closed or arriving only to realise you’ve forgotten something vital. Take a deep breath, get yourself comfy on that suitcase and read our words of advice little Stokie.
YEP – Gasotrostop
The change of diet and weather can sometimes unfortunately lead to uncontrollable shitting. If you’ve got a nice comfy toilet and some free time then let it out, ride it through, hold your own hand because no one else will, you’ll be ok soon. However, if clashes with bus journeys or plane rides, you’re gonna want to delay the inevitable, no one likes shitting themselves in public places.
YEP – Disinfectant
You’ll trip at the bull run, you’ll slip at La Tomatina, you’ll get a tattoo that you totally shouldn’t regret because it’ll always be a good memory, but might if it gets horribly infected. Disinfectant will become your new moisturiser. Stick some in your pocket and keep it there.
YEP – Condoms
(Hopefully not the same ones you packed on your last trip.) Come on guys and gals, let’s have safe fun. Nothing ruins the mood like realising you can’t actually have sex and then just sitting beside each other awkwardly and nakedly twiddling your thumbs instead of each other.
YEP – A towel
Sometimes you get lucky and your hostel will offer them up for free but a lot of the time they won’t. You’ll end up standing awkwardly in the shower cubicle waiting to drip dry. Best case scenario, you’ll be fortunate enough to find some toilet paper nearby to speed up the drying process. It also doubles up pretty well as a pillow or a blanket during long stop overs in the airport or waiting for buses.
YEP – Suncream
Seems obvious and yet there’s always bound to be that one group of lads wearing what looks like a white t-shirt but is in fact the only part of their upper body not red and blistering and radiation regretful heat. Maybe if you’re lucky, you’ll even see the white mark of their sunglasses across that lovely lobster face. And purposely burning in the hopes that it will turn to tan is dumb. You’ll look like some kind of skin shedding monster.
NOPE – The majority of your clothes
You will wear the top layer of your suitcase, tossing it back at the end of the day and pulling it back on the next. Suitcases are annoying and somehow everything disappears in that fairly small rectangle. You’re not going to dig through it all for something different every morning, blurry eyed and pounding head. You’re just not. Pack for a week max and leave the rest.
NOPE – Airplane pillow
They are not comfortable. They don’t even really make sense. They just sort of prop your droopy head in an awkward position and maybe keep your neck warm. They’re also so bulky at the back that you can’t even sit properly, they force your head forward and you ultimately end up sleeping with your chin flopped onto your chest in the perfect position for your friends to take pictures of your double chin.
NOPE – A sewing set
Have you ever actually sewed anything ever? If the answer is no then lets not pretend you’re going to find the time during your alcohol fuelled Oktoberfest fun to learn. Leave the needle and thread behind.
NOPE – Phrasebooks
The internet has everything now. Download a translate app. Flicking, flustered through pages of a tiny book desperately trying to ask where the toilet is because you forgot to pack your gastrostop, is not a situation you want to find yourself in.
NOPE – Anything you hold dear
You’ll be lolloping happily around, blissfully unaware of anything that’s not immediately in front of you. Explaining to your grandmother that you accidentally left the ring she passed down to you in a ‘friends’ house should be avoided.
NOPE – Tonnes of camera equipment
Maybe this is your thing and if so, go for it, you’ll have countless opportunities to take amazing photos. But if not, it’ll all just sit in your bag the entire time, weighing it down and making you depressed that you’re not more creative. Now is not the time for such worries, chill out, use your phone.
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