This is literally my backpack throwing up on my bed. I normally do not carry a purse and have learned after being in Africa for two years always be prepared! Be prepared you may spend a night somewhere you don't want to and be prepared there's never a toilet in said place.
Handy wipes are the number one item I carry. I carry wipes more often than I carry my passport. I have come to a conclusion either there's a shortage of TP in Kenya or Kenyans simply have an aversion to TP because I think I have actually found it in bathrooms less than a dozen times in 7 months.
Phone chargers for yes, my two phones. I carry a Kenyan number and a US number. They both work everywhere even 3 hours out into the bush. Air cards for my crappy internet. I have two because you never know which one will work better on which day with the sun, moon and stars in which location. It's a crap shoot.
Ok...sorry guys....tampons. Always carry them because they simply don't exist in some places in Kenya and NO places in Rwanda. I actually hauled a six month supply (Costco style) to Rwanda. Don't ask me what they use in Rwanda....don't want to know that much information.
Toothpaste, toothbrush, floss....I'm compulsive to the point of OCD with dental hygiene.
Book, an absolute necessity for those long waits at the bank, border, side of the road. Never be without one. I just might find a blank cover for this one, however. Great book by Dr. Greg Mills, everything I have come to believe since I've been here...(Aid does not work...more about that later)
Sunglasses, hat, sunscreen lip stuff....Kenya's on the equator, you get burnt, even my dark skin, in 17 seconds.
Once I go back to the US I might have to downsize a bit, after all we do have TP and tampons readily available!