Type 1 life adventures
I go through a lot of blood testing strips in hot weather. But I was chatting recently with a Type 1 acquaintance who is about to return to Vietnam for another year, where the hypo battle in the heat and humidity would be a formidable challenge.
He’s stocking up on supplies because he cannot source the necessary paraphernalia over there, which prompted me to ask how Vietnamese diabetics get what they need. He reckons they don’t – they die or don’t even get diagnosed.
This conversation and a call from friend about diabetic costs on behalf of her refugee client were reminders about how fortunate I am to have access to effective and subsidised healthcare – even though at times the limited approach of western medicine does my head in.
One of the things I recommended to this acquaintance was the Frio insulin cooler bags. Insulin gets damaged in the heat and I found these bags worked a treat once I worked out how to use them properly. That includes allowing them to breathe so that the insulation feature functions.
So when it’s come to choosing my hiking gear one of the considerations for the pack was a secure mesh pocket on the outside. This and the other variables like comfort, posture, capacity, weight.
I got the email yesterday to tell me that the AARN Featherlite Freedom is now in store and I’m collecting it on Tuesday. The ultralight sleeping bag is being put together in Poland. The little box that arrived this week contained my shelter and sleeping mat. So far the curtains have protected the parcel man from exposure to my little excitement dance each time his white van pulls up in the driveway.
It’s been pretty full-on reading and listening so much about gear. I’m fortunate to have folks in my life who are very experienced hikers, from whom I’ve got great tips. There was an interesting moment watching two of these advisers powing it out in front of me, each ‘politely’ defending their choice of gear and implicit approach to hiking. People get funny, and that’s borne out in a lot of the forums I’ve been perusing.
Of course, being prepared for the conditions and having confidence in your gear is super important. But for a while I found myself deliberating and going around in circles, there seemed so much to consider. To some extent my preferences are going to become clearer only after I start overnight hikes and get my groove. So for now I’ve gone for a balance of durable, light, comfort and reputable stuff.
I had planned to be testing my goodies out in the Grampians at the end of the month. But it’s currently being decimated by fire. Conditions for which no gear can prepare you.