Gadgets for my trip, from
Istanbul to Cairo
|1) Etrex Venture Gps
09/12/2001 6:32:48 PM
On my last trip to Peru (2000), my digital camera was the most
"wowed" gadget, this time (2001), it's the GPS.
What is this?
- Everyone will ask you, what is this?
- Adventure to places that were impossible to reach before
- Record your whole journey on to computer: good for revisiting or benefiting other travellers.
- Travel longer distant
- ...with shorter time
- Identify current location relative to other known way points
- Know where to get off when taking public bus
- Know the current speed, distant to target, ETA and many more...
It's a eTrex GPS (Global Positioning System) that use the satellites
to calculate current location. It has a database for most of the
cities in the world. Even small towns like Selcuk, Bergama, Palmyra and Asyut
are included. It doesn't have a map. The higher model (eTrex Legend,
Vista) has mapping functions but is totally useless for the places I
went. To use this unit, you still need a compass, a map
and a good sense of logic.
How to find a location without a map?
First find a known location in your guide book (e.g. a bus station) and
mark it as a waypoint. Then figure out the relative direction and
distant of your target (from writing description of your guide book or locals), you can
then navigate to the unknown destination from the known position.
It is an entertaining mental challenge, but as soon as you
figure out one location, you can calculate the rest.
When it doesn't work?
1, inside buildings.
2, in deep vallleys
3, when climbing (with steep cliffs)
It works best in the desert where I marked the location of the camp and
could navigate from the village to the camp with an unknown path. It
doesn't work well when climbing. First the mountain will block most of
your signals. Then even if you can get a signal, your path is usually
going vertical and overlap with each other. If you follow the treks of your
GPS, you might end up flying off the cliff.
Purchase Price: CDN$210 (tax included)
Pocket size, 12 channels.
|2) Canon A20 Digital Camera
09/12/2001 6:42:06 PM
Many people have already got digital cameras this year (2001)
so it didn't cause many WOWs and AHs like last time. But
when I showed this in front of the kids in Malatya, I almost
incite a riot. The sheriff has to interfere.
For more detail description, please refer to my A20 review.
Purchase Price: CDN$ 540 (June 2001)
|3) Mosquitos And Dog Repellent
09/12/2001 5:45:42 PM
With 98% deets, the mosquito repellent can eat through
plastics. If it's good enough to kill you, it should
be good enough to send away the mosquitos. I used it in
the Amazon. It seemed to work very well other than the fact that
it ruined the LCD of my digital camera (which was stolen later).
Purchase Price: CDN$ 7.50
The dog repellent is weak (0.35% capsicum). It should still has some
effects on hostile people (like a weak pepper spray). If not,
at least it's good for adding
spice to your meals. I saw some wild dogs in Palmyra, but they
didn't go near me. Nevertheless, after the Peru Incident,
I feel safer with a half baked pepper spray.
Purchase Price: CDN$ 13.00
|4) Mosquito Head Net
09/12/2001 6:29:28 PM
Another most WOWed gadget is my mosquito head net.
It looks silly when you wear it in the city, but when
people see tons of mosquitos in the Amazon and clouds of
flies in the desert, they will all look at you with
Purchase Price: CDN$ 4
|5) Casio Calendar
09/12/2001 6:18:22 PM
My Casio watch has calendar in it. It can also
store my passport #s and most used phone numbers.
It has been discontinued.
Purchase Price: CDN$150
|6) Pocket Dictionary
09/12/2001 6:37:26 PM
A mini pocket dictionary I used to store my
Transfering data is a bit clumsy and reading
the small screen is not too practical. I guess I
need a real Palm pilot for that. But it's small and
it's cool. It works well as a dictionary or just
to store critical information.
Purchase Price: HK$ 780
|7) Mag Lite
09/12/2001 6:33:02 PM
Eveyone knows what it is. It can
also be used as a candle. Don't touch the
light bulb. When I was exploring a dark
tunnel in Cappadocia, the light bulb burnt out.
Luckily I was close to the entrance.
|8) Helly Hansen Jacket
09/12/2001 6:49:50 PM
Helly Hansen Jacket is as good as (or better) than
Gortex. It's water and wind proof. It's light and
is good for climates from -1C to +23C (for me).
Purchase Price: CDN$ 199
|9) Misty Mountain Quick Dry
09/12/2001 6:39:32 PM
Misty mountain quick dry shirt and pants.
It's extremely light and easy to pack.
It performs extremely well in desert and
The pants has 16 pockets. I bought two of them,
and I wore them for the whole trip.
Purchase Price: shirt - CDN$32, pants - CDN$39, the hat was CDN$5