I’ve received requests from my readers to write an entry about the contents of my bag (or in this case, my backpack). Much obliged! I will fulfill your wishes with this post. Here you are:


  1. 古都之美. “The beauty of the ancient capital”. A Chinese calendar I bought in Shenzhen. Every page features a beautiful picture of Chinese nature or art, usually related to Beijing.
  2. Chinese health tea from the local market. This is loose tea which consists of flowers, berries, herbs and actual tea.
  3. Wallet.
  4. Campus map. (Not really for me anymore, but for confused taxi drivers.)
  5. Notebook. I use this to scribble down people’s names, random thoughts, pictures, addresses, facts.
  6. Kaixinguo, “happiness fruit” (pistachio nuts).
  7. Dried cranberries. These are popular here.
  8. Tangerines. (Kumquats weren’t available.)
  9. Jasmine tea.
  10. The by now-infamous respirators.
  11. My room key.
  12. Chinese student insurance card.
  13. Lock.
  14. Blister adhesive tapes.
  15. Hand disinfectant.
  16. Malaria medication. (I only take this before travelling to Yunnan. There’s no need for it elsewhere.)
  17. Camera with equipment.
  18. Jungle oil. (= miracle mosquito repellant I purchased before conquering Mt Kebnekaise. The mosquitoes in Lapland are known for their stamina, and this repellant actually did wonders).
  19. General malady ointment.
  20. Ecological comb. I recommend wooden combs to everyone. The plastic ones are charged and create frizzy stand-up hair in the dry winter air.
  21. Menstrual cup. I highly recommend this to every female as well. You will save a lot financially and ecologically, and you don’t need to worry about soiling five-star(?) hotel sheets.
  22. Dried Lactobacillus bacteria with vitamins. I haven’t really needed any of the “medicines” I’m carrying, they’re there just in case. The hygiene level is relatively good here.
  23. Stone shaped like a heart from Morocco. I forgot it in my bag and apparently it goes through fluoroscopy without any problems.
  24. Wuhan University “accomplishment notebook”. You get a stamp every time you finish a course.
  25. Sanitary towels.
  26. Knife and peeler for fruit and vegetables bought at the outdoor markets in case of acute hunger.