I don’t understand; how do you manage to look good when you travel?

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I was pretty much disconnected from the social media world during my travels in Europe; my phone was pickpocketed and without any access to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram – I just stopped contacting my friends and focused on being on the road. Once I reached home, I reacquainted myself with the newsfeed and realized that a lot of people were traveling as well – and, damn, do they look good. I often wonder how do they manage to do it. How many pairs of shoes and change of outfits did they bring with them?

I brought two pairs of jeans, a pair of shorts, 5 shirts, two summer dresses, one winter jacket, a pair of flip flops and my faithful pair of Keen for the entire two months in Europe.

Fashionistas reading this would be aghast by now but really, looking good was the last thing on my mind when I was constantly on the lookout for art galleries. For two months, I looked like something the cat dragged in – dusty, wrinkled and always, always weary-looking. I am truly in awe with travelers who look like they are ready to strut down a runway if given the chance. Me? I would be handcuffed by the fashion police with no bails.

How do you do it? How do you have the strength to apply make up and keep your hair glossy with that perfectly ironed outfit and 3 inch heels? Maybe the 3-inch heels part is a bit of an exaggeration but I have seen countless impeccably dressed tourists. Usually, I just smile wryly to myself, silently applauding their effort and discipline while they look at me with that shocked round eyes – ah yes, sorry for being unkempt but my hostels for the last 7 days just didn’t provide laundry service.

Yes, I recycle my worn shirts. Don’t look so shock. Desperate times call for desperate measures after all. I guess it is my fault – lugging 40% of necessities and 60% of books is not a really great way to travel. But so be it, books last forever while fashion, well, fashion is temporary.

Which is why I only have two photos of myself in the entire trip. Kudos.

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