Traveling Without a Safety Net


I knew it was going to be close when I packed the bag, but I didn’t expect it to be quite this close. The bag read 53 pounds as it sat on the scale at the check-in desk, but the agent didn’t seem all that bothered. I didn’t even want to think about what the rifle case weighed, but my guess is somewhere in the 80 to 90 pound range. Needless to say, I didn’t let that one anywhere near the scale. I had barely squeaked under the weight limits, but in doing so I left behind a relatively crucial piece of equipment — my laptop computer.

This weekend, I’m off to Bend, Oregon for the Crimson Trace midnight 3-gun competition. Which means that not only am I packing my standard loadout for gun related junkets (cameras and such) but I also have all of my 3-gun gear PLUS ammo. In order to keep from being charged FAR out the ass for overly heavy bags, I only took the bare essentials with me. And, for the first time, that didn’t include my laptop.

Ever since my first junket, the laptop has been essential. Speed, surprise, and violence of action are a way of life for TTAG, so being able to post about something the moment it happens is the name of the game. Which meant dragging along the bulky laptop just so I could use the full size keyboard.

Recently, things have changed. I bought myself a Nexus 7 for Christmas last year, and I have absolutely loved it ever since. But it was only recently that I also bought a wireless keyboard, and I found myself using the tablet and wireless keyboard as a replacement for the laptop. The only things I couldn’t do from the setup was processor heavy functions like video editing, but typically that doesn’t need to be “real time” — I can do it when I get home.

When the new 2013 Nexus 7 came out, I was all over it. I pre-ordered my device, and have been playing with it ever since. And for the first time, the speed and the usability of the tablet allows me to function as well if not better than I had with my old laptop. So for this trip, where the weight was already an issue, I nixed the laptop completely.

It’s a little unnerving, traveling without that safety net of a conventional laptop. But so far, so good.

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