Saturday, June 16, 2007

Packing for India

The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies or opinions.

Constitutionally-incapable of Packing Light!

As an adult, I've been proud that my wardrobe does not include exclusively U.S. brands, but doing this inventory shows me that it's nearly all western fashion. Also, I've always declared Pat to be the materialistic one of the two of us, but in reality, I see how my clothing fetish disqualifies me from claiming any sort of asceticism.

Additionally, I plan to buy a number of salwar kameezes, to be respectful of the way women dress locally. So why am I packing the extensive clothing collection that follows? Because I'm nervous, and need to have an illusion of control, which packing these clothes gives me, along with a feeling that I'm not leaving my entire home behind for six months.

Here's what I want to take to India:

Green Bell brand -- made in India -- brown and sparkly-multi-colored-sequin salwar kameez
Paul Green tan, leather shoes

Escada blue, tweed, wool blazer
Escada blue, ribbed, wool turtleneck
Armani navy, wool pants
Dansko black, leather Mary Jane shoes

Escada light-gray, light-wool suit
lavender, sleeveless wool turtleneck
red, sleeveless cashmere top
light-blue, short-sleeved cashmere sweater
Paul Green black, gray, leather and suede shoes

BIBA red and orange, silk, Indian blouse
Escada light-gray, light wool pants from suit above
Dansko Mary Janes

Ralph Lauren light-blue, wool blazer
Ralph Lauren silver-thread, cable-knit sweater
Armani navy with cream pin-stripe pants
Same shoes

Red and tan and navy, striped, cotton Indian blouse
Armani navy with cream pin-stripe pants from above
Same shoes

Putty, teal and navy, burlap Indian blouse
Armani navy with cream pin-stripe pants from above
Same shoes

Calvin Klein dusky-purple, satin jacket
Armani navy, wool pants from above
soldier-blue, ribbed, silk, short-sleeved top
Same shoes

Pale-green, linen, white-collared, button-down blouse
Armani navy, wool pants from above
Coach black, leather, silver-buckled belt
Same shoes

Loro Piana coral, linen blouse
Armani navy with cream pin-stripe pants from above
Belt from above
Same shoes

Calvin Klein, light-olive-tan, silk jacket
soldier-blue, ribbed, silk, short-sleeved top
Armani navy with cream pin-stripe pants from above
Same shoes

Calvin Klein black, rayon suit -- need lots of Static Guard, but it looks good
Purple, sleeveless cashmere turtleneck
Same soldier-blue, ribbed, silk, short-sleeved top from above
Paul Green black, gray, leather and suede shoes

Karen Kane cotton, Indian-patterned, tan, gray, orange-maroon blazer
Escada light-gray, light wool pants from suit above
Orange-maroon, silk, long-sleeved sweater
Same shoes

Lilly Pulitzer raspberry, cable-knit, wool sweater
Lilly Pulitzer raspberry, white, pin-striped, cotton blouse
Escada light-gray, light wool pants from suit above
Dark-periwinkle, cashmere cowl-neck sweater
Navy, velvet pants
Same shoes

Lacoste dark-periwinkle, silk, cotton, spandex suit
Lacoste light-periwinkle, cotton, spandex blouse
Calvin Klein light-blue, cotton blouse
Same shoes

Armani olive, pin-striped, wool suit
Armani olive, no-sleeved, ribbed, wool turtleneck
Olive rayon shell
Tommy Hilfiger, olive, yellow, magenta, striped, cotton turtleneck
Same shoes

Red, cotton, silk, spandex cowl-neck sweater
Escada black, cotton, tweed pants
Armani black, crepe, wool pants
Dansko, shiny, black, leather clogs

Jones New York, pink-black-tan-white-striped, cotton, long-sleeved blouse
Armani black, wool, cuffed, bell-bottom pants
Same shoes as above

Denim, zippered blouse
Green-with-yellow-flecks, cashmere, zippered sweater
IBM pale-blue, cotton golf shirt
Lacoste, tomato-red, cotton, polo shirt
Lacoste, pale-purple, cotton, polo shirt
Periwinkle, cotton golf pants
Ralph Lauren, cotton, blue jeans
Columbia, navy-blue, cotton sweatpants
Columbia, gray and teal, cotton sweatshirt
Michigan, navy-blue, cotton sweatpants
(3) cotton T-shirts
(2) sleeveless T-shirts for around the apartment
(2) pairs of black, nylon Adidas track pants
(5) Speedo, one-piece bathing suits
Two Mexican sarongs
New Balance white and navy, leather sneakers
Birkenstock tan, suede clogs
Mephisto olive, brown walking shoes
Dansko soldier-blue, gray leather shoes
Coach black leather, gold-buckled belt
Coach navy-blue leather, silver-buckled belt
Birkenstock, taupe sandals
Speedo rubber flip-flops
Giant, cotton beach towel
My feather pillow
A six-month supply of my favorite toothpaste; shampoo; conditioner; dental-floss...
Ziploc baggies
Off! to repel mosquitos
Medicine and vitamins
Books for my independent study
Golf clubs
Golf shoes...

What would you pack for a six-month business assignment?


Stevious said...

We found Soffell to be really effective at repelling mosquitoes while we were in Vietnam, and much less medicinal or chemical than products like "Off!". I did a quick search and came up with this URL about the product: I'm sure you'll find it available in Asia.

Nhut brought a case of each "flavor" home with him, and uses it to repel mosquitoes when he's doing yardwork here in Austin.

Good luck on your assignment!

Sarah Siegel said...

Thanks for the tip!

Henya said...

Dear Sarah,

Take the six month supply of meds and toiletries... some of the shoes and especially the sandals... and a couple of business suits... and the underwear...

leave the rest.

then indulge in a spree of salwar kameez buying...
and be comfy.

remember you are going to a tropical climate...

jewelry is also a good thing to buy there, once you find a trusted recommendation. leave the usual stuff at home.

Instead of all the stuff you think you should pack, think about stuff to take with you to give people as gifts... there must be something appreciated there that is easy to get here...

Henya R.

ps. this is the first time i am actually responding to a blog... very exciting... thanks to Marn, who sent me the link to your blog... and thanks to you for writing it. do you read these comments?

Sarah Siegel said...


I'm honored to be helping you make history!

Thanks for the tips. In my experience, Bangalore, where we'll be most of the time, has relatively cool weather, unlike what you'd imagine about India; it felt like SF. And I do agree that I'll be buying salwar kameezes aplenty to wear to work and in the less cool areas.

I didn't include the list of gifts I'm bringing because I flattered myself that any of the recipients might see my blog and have the surprise spoiled, but yes, I know that gift-space is essential in our suitcases.