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Top 5 Things to Bring to a Desert Island

What would you take with you to a desert island? The answers collected in the InterNations office here in Munich were predictably diverse, from Wi-Fi sticks and TVs to pen and paper. However, there were also some clear favorites among the range of items. Here are the InterNations staff’s top five.

#5 Hammock

When hearing Desert Island, most people automatically think of a tropical island, with sandy beaches and swaying palm trees. And what are palm trees known to be good for? Hanging up a hammock of course! That’s at least the opinion of many InterNations staffers who chose to bring one along on this hypothetical journey.

And if necessary, you can always use a hammock for other purposes than gently swinging in the breeze. Depending on its structure and material, repurposing a hammock as fishing net or canvas bag, for example, comes to mind.

#4 Music

Desert islands, by definition, are not exactly bursting with people and entertainment options. Bringing along some music is therefore an excellent idea. In order to enjoy your beats for a while, just make sure your music player of choice is solar-powered. Or simply take along your own instrument(s), as Lena from Germany would:

It will be fun jamming with the monkeys in the sunset.

One good thing about being stranded on a desert island is, after all, the lack of neighbors to complain about your singing performances at the beach; with the exception of the monkeys, of course.

#3 Book

Books as another form of entertainment were similarly popular with the InterNations staff members. Some hope to glean survival tips from Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, while others, like our Spanish Señorita Elena, would take along a book simply for the pleasure of reading:

A book allows me to travel with my imagination to other places while being stuck on this island.

And should you ever grow tired of reading the same old book, over and over again, it can still prove useful. Paper as kindling for a fire, for instance, is one use that comes to mind.

#2 Sunscreen

Now, this may simply be because a good number of the InterNations staff hails from countries that do not see the sun as often as a tropical island would. However, sunscreen actually managed to be our second most important thing to bring along to a desert island. A sensible choice, isn’t it?

For even taking into account that you will at one point or another run out, sunscreen at least allows you to avoid getting hopelessly burned straight at the beginning. And after many weeks on the island, your skin will hopefully be tanned and desensitized enough to not burn after a few minutes in the sun.

#1 Knife

So what’s the big number one that we would take with us to a desert island? A knife of course! More than half of our colleagues who responded made sure they would have a knife handy while on the island. It has, after all, many uses. Our US girl Paula pointed some of these out for us:

You can use it to open coconuts, make spears for fishing, and crack crab legs.

And if the knife’s big enough (think machete), you can even use it to cut wood for your shelter and camp fires. Hardly surprising then, that it is the InterNations staff’s number one thing to take along with you to a desert island.

+1: Company

When collecting the answers from our colleagues, it quickly became apparent that few wanted to be stuck on that island all on their own. Now, we do not endorse objectifying people – the question had, after all, clearly been about things to bring along – so boyfriend & Co. did not make it on the list of our top five.

Still, it does seem worth to mention who many InterNations employees would take along, true to our motto Nobody stands alone. The best friend or significant other was clearly the most popular choice. Reasons for this were not necessarily only the desire for company, however, as our Czech colleague Adela made sure to mention:

My boyfriend can fix and build ANYTHING!

Now that sure comes in handy when stranded on a desert island! However, you need not fear should your friend or partner be less talented. Simply follow Paula’s suggestion and bring along a Boy/Girl Scout instead, for starting fires, telling ghost-stories, and planning the exit strategy.



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