Thursday, 22 April 2010

WHUCA: Travel Edition

There's been something on my mind lately. It's “Why??? Why though? Why? What? No! Just why?”

Like why some travellers insist on donning hiking boots and khaki gear for a day of city sightseeing. There ain’t no mountains round here, sweets. This ain’t the outback. So why, pray tell, are you standing by the Sydney Opera House geared up like Bear Grylls on an desert mission?

And rucksacks! They’re everywhere! Not on the normal folk, no no. Just the tourists. What do they carry in those packed-to-the-rafters-rucksacks? You’re in a city! You need a wallet and a camera, maximus. You don’t need a compass, towel, waterproof cagoule, Lonely Planet, spare socks, navigational equipment or whatever else you’re hoarding in there, because realistically, even if you walk for 40 minutes, you’re still going to be within skipping distance of your hotel anyway. Do you usually wonder around London / Berlin / Paris / Your Home City dressed like Indiana Jones? No? Right then. Now stop it, you’re embarrassing us all.

So, with these thoughts buzzing in my hypersensitive little mind, today I made a break from Sydney Central and drifted to the Eastern suburbs. It was there I found an escapee, lurking by the bus stands at Bondi Junction station, wondering aimlessly and looking confused whenever a large, four wheeled vehicle approached.

But I was confused, too. He wasn’t dressed for the beach. He wasn’t dressed for a hike. He wasn’t dressed for a stroll around a city, although the brown satchel did throw me off a bit to begin with. There was only one other possibility that could have spurred this particular outfit choice. He was dressed for one purpose, and one purpose only: to mark himself explicitly as One Who Is Not Of This Country.

Blue Soup’s words echoed in my head from a yesterday's post. “You need to dust off your trusty sneaky cameraphone like the old days”.

So thank Blue Soup and observe, readers, the vision that stood before me today.

Yeah, I know what you’re thinking. Are they…? Is he…? Has he…?

Yes. They are. He is.

Khaki, three quarter length trousers. Tight, sleeveless vest. Multicoloured rucksack, packed with essentials, plus accompanying manbag-satchel-thing.

And socks with sandals.

Sometimes, “what have you come as” doesn’t even cover it.


Anonymous said...

oh dear me

The Unbearable Banishment said...

Do you know why this is extra-special funny to me? Because my 3-year old daughter has a rucksack in the exact same color palate. The only difference between the two is her's has Dora the Explorer on it.

Blue soup said...

:D I'm glad that you've put up a WHUCA post. Although I had managed to get through the worst of the withdrawal, I think a treat every now and then is in order :) Keep it up!

And, as for chappy in your photos... There are no words...

Brennig said...

Socks with sandals are a perfectly acceptable piece of geek uniform. Just ask any Unix-nerd.

James said...


I skipped down to the picture and description and thought for a mo it was the arrival of the boyfriend!

arbyn said...

Hmm looks like a multi-functional wardrobe to me... very practical. He is ready for every weather situation (including floods) and never has to change his clothes the ENTIRE time he's travelling!

Anonymous said...

He's brilliant. You should adopt him.

I'd love to know what's in that thing tied to his waist, a special edition Swiss army knife maybe? Or maps, lots of maps.

Ellie said...

what the fuck is in the satchel on his right hip?

Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

PJB - My thoughts exactly.

Unbearable - Haha! That's brilliant. I think this one was a Dunlop or some other obscure 80s brand. Very odd choice.

Blue Soup - I forgot how fun it was to rip the piss out of some random person on the street, in secret on my blog. Feels good ;)

Brennig - Spoken like a true geek. Now, take the socks off.

James - You're on crack, mate. Ha! The boyfriend wishes he had that much style...

Arbyn - There multi-functional, and there's function over fashion. Too much function going on in this outfit I fear.

Cynical - I did wonder the same thing. Because if it was maps or something, surely you'd just put it in the big rucksack.

Ellie - It must be some top secret delivery. Maybe a netbook. Maybe as Cynical said, just a lot of maps. But I don't think he had maps, he looked too confused.

Christopher said...

This is an amazing post! :) Glad to see someone finally tackle this "issue"! When I lived in Buenos Aires this used to drive me mad and it does now in Porto, where I currently live. WHAT is the reasoning behind this?? I am so tempted to stop a random N.American/Northern European tourist and just ask them sometimes! I found your blog through you comment on Graduate Fog by the way.


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