I need a Travel Mirror with Light for Travel

I am having great fun here in Senegal, and it has nothing to do with being in Senegal. What do I miss about the USA the most? The ability to stand in front of a lighted mirror and shave. I miss this because I have never tried to figure out a solution, I have just accepted this problem for 13 years, yesterday I found a solution by focusing on this travel problem and doing travel research.

I live in a world of small islands; these "Traveler Islands" can be moved from country to country. I live in approximately the same Hotel room all the time. Now, you need to pretend for a second I live in the Hilton, you know I do not, but please pretend. Then pretend I just move from the Hilton in Abidjan, Ivory Coast to the Hilton in Dakar, Senegal. You would be expecting me to live rather nice, in comfort and free of worries.

This is almost exactly, what I do; I always live in the same standard of Hotel room. The price sometimes goes up 5-10 dollars, but my quality of life remains the same. Often a hotel truly sucks for everyone in the Hotel, but for me it is great.

Everyone is taking a cold shower in my present Hotel in Senegal, except for me, and it is 70 degrees outside, a person needs a light jacket at night. I have a hot shower because I am special…

Dakar / Yoff / Senegal, West-West Africa --- Monday, March 7, 2011


Why good fun in Senegal?
On these small "Traveler Islands" where I live, I sometime come up with great ideas for fun and entertainment.


1. Meeting Bah, my Ivory Coast girlfriend was one of the best forms of entertainment and diversion in Ghana and Ivory Coast.

2. Catching the Malaria Parasite in my body and killing it was exciting and entertaining in Lome, Togo.

3. Of course it was an Adventure travel extreme rush to know I could be killed in Abidjan, Ivory Coast in the small civil war there.

4. Senegal Fun
I have stumbled on a book idea, and my mind is rushing with excitement, this is the best type of entertainment for a traveler, because thoughts and ideas are 100 percent mobile. The book idea is this, more or less I describe the how to convert a basic room into a great room by using special gear.

Dakar or Yoff, Senegal for the most part is one of the most boring places I have been in months. It is annoying to leave the room, there are these locals with dreads that confront me and want me talk with them so they can sell me something. They make the boys in Ivory Coast seem meek, and this group are over the top tourist trap aggressive.

A Not-in-Africa Hotel
The present Hotel I am living in, located on my "Traveler Island" that has now moved to Senegal has he common area outside my room is extra nice. The Belgium owner and the present manager of the Hotel made this Hotel nothing like Africa, so when I am not walking around outside the Hotel in Senegal, I can return to my room and peace, I am in Belgium. If I enter my room, I am in the USA.

This is what a Five Star Hotel does, it allows you to live in the USA, and walk out of the Hotel and observe the locals, then return to the womb.

Mentally, I am Back
I am having a lot of fun in this Hotel on my punch out list of small problems to solve for the book. One of the problems is, I need a mirror and light to shave in my room. This is not a problem for me, but it is for many people. Women want to put on makeup, I like to shave with a good mirror and light, but I am not going to change Hotels because of this, I can shave in the dark.

I remember one time in Togo, a man moved into a 40-dollar hotel so he could shave. I think he looked at himself in the mirror and shaved everyday for a half-hour. He was only happy when the mirror and lighting was good in the Hotel, so he paid an extra 20 Dollars per night for room just so he could shave.

I am paying an extra paying and extra 10 dollars, or 300 dollars per month right now to have high-speed internet in my room in Senegal.

I figured out a way now to have great lighting in my restroom, so I can shave.
I always have a hot water bath, I always have a coffee cup, I always have fitted sheets, I always have a place to hang my clothes, and the room seldom supplies them, I carry gear that allows this to happen.

Funny, I realized, I am always complaining about Hotel rooms on this Blog. Then, in an almost silly lack of explanation by me. I forget to tell the readers, I never suffered, because I always have with me work-around-solutions. I am just complaining, but I seldom suffer because of the complaint, I am annoyed at Hotels for not supplying basic travel room needs.

Video of Toyota Overland Vehicle in Via Via Auberge in Yoff, Dakar, Senegal

I need a Travel Mirror with Light for Travel


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I've kept one of those small rectangular (near unbreakable) hiker's signal mirrors in my toiletry kit since '05. Fantastic for when there's no mirror in the room.

How is it for using, can I:

1. Tying to a nail or peg something to look at myself?
2. Sit on a table to use?
3. Hang on a hook to use?
4. Clip it onto the edge of something?
5. Stick to something? Suction cups?
6. Magnets

Do you have a direct link to Amazon.com of the one you use?

Thanks Craig

Andy, I always wanted to ask you. I am still working to find a good system to hang my clothing dry. Especially when I use a room for one or two nights and there is obviously not enough time to wait to get them dry. I want something universal, efficient, that will give them enough exposure to air in the room while I am out. A system that will fit on any wall, in any condition. I am still working, but I have not yet found a good solution (I am only traveling for 9 months).

What is your strategy for hanging clothing.

PS: As for mirror, I always borrow. I see no reason to carry one with me, even in rooms where I've stayed one month. I had disc hernia so I do not carry what it's not essential, which in my opinion it's a mirror.

GI Style Signal Mirror $13 on Amazon


The fan is what determines the location of a clothesline. I have nylon parachute cord that i use for a clothesline, i have two of them and they are about 6-7 meters in length. On one end of the rope is an eyelet screw, that I can use to screw into wood or cracks.

90 percent of the time, i open the door, and put the rope over the top hinge, then pull it to something, maybe a curtain, a louvered window or the shower head. I like floor fans because they make the room the most comfortable.

To make the clothes dry, you need to learn to wring the clothes extremely well, and rotate, reverse, and wring them as they dry. One of these days I will make a video of how to dry clothes inside a room. I cannot remember the last time I took the clothes out to dry, I always dry them in the room because I do not lose clothes that way.

One of these days I will get this link better updated, and will make videos of my laundry from step one to finished.


I need a camera person, this is the big problem for these videos, I need someone that can follow me around in the room.

You readers who live in States, Canada, UK can easily purchase onlie and often get free ground shipping door to door, had I been in States early 2000's could have made a lot of money Drop Shipping all sorts of things, you pay wholesale, the customer on line pays retail, The items are shipped from a US or Canadian warehouse with 'your label', was impossible here in Central America, there is a service for the well to do, perhps they ship nto Africa Andy like UPS International and other courier companies based in Miami, where one has both a physical and PO Box in USA, if you have only a debit card UPS branch here in ES will use their Credit Card to purchase items online for you so you are safe. However, shipments go through customs here and import taxes 1 to 30 depending item, must be paid on delivery, levied even on books, plus 13 IVA or sales tax, had the services with another company years ago, when I required it, moral of story is get what you need at home before you depart overseas, I remember last year here in ES, I needed something that is fairly cheap in US, here in electronics stores 'no hay' don't have and one place had it at 3x the USA price, got along without it.
Here in Central America gasoline and diesel is more expensive than USA, many items in supermarkets are more expensive, everything going up, fuel surcharges on rt airline tickets are spiking, Add 10 to 15 to prices to those in any updated print Guidebook, which data is already 6 months old the day it comes off the press, never argue over prices with locals, bargain, but do not get into heated disputes, you may wind up in jail!!!!. Only one bookstore in El Salvador sells guidebooks in English, most locals do not have computer or Inter connection at home, some, with families are trying to survive on $200 a Month, I spend about $150 or so on food a month and that precludes eating out, except on rare occasions, when I arrive in Panajachel, Guatemala, the Tienda (store) at Onion corner is a 2 minute walk from my hotel, I buy bread, ham and cheese for lunch and dinner, coffee and breakfast in the market, I bring a thermos so have coffee in early morning., best these days to find a travel companion and share lodging expenses, a single room in Central America costs usually 80 per cent of a double or triple room. Transportation is cheap compared to US or Canada, paradise if you stick to your budget, if you are a heavy drinker and like ex pat bars in travel destination add about $20USD a day to your budget. I drink soda, bring it back to the room. I now have small hot plate to travel, despise going to restaurant alone.

Howdy Andy. Yes to all 6 questions, save for the magnets. It's not magnetic.

I pulled the mirror from my kit and took snapped two photos of it. It has CLEARLY seen better days, but is the original that has been with me since 2005. Very useful.


Have you tried shaving in front of your webcam and using the computer screen as your mirror? If you need more light, you could get and led light that powers through your USB. It may not be very comfortable for every day use but might work if all else fails. Of course you would have to cover your keyboard well. I have an external webcam that has 6 led lights on it. Of course I had the luxury of purchasing it directly from Hong Kong on ebay for about six dollars including shipping.

The Webcam idea is great, truly could make a good mirror.

I am doing Travel Gear Research, the real world is like this, one person needs a mirror to shave, while another must have a cup of coffee in the room. I am the coffee person, and very quickly learned to make instant coffee in my room.

I have beat many travel problems.

1. Cold Showers
2. Coffee
3. Washing clothes

I have not beaten the shower mirror and with a light problem. I think I know the easy to purchase solution. There is tons of gear in travel gear shops.. aagh, there is just not one next to the Hotel here in Senegal.

The solution i have in mind is this.

1. Six meters of roughly 16-18 gauge 2 wire.
2. Light socket on end with NO switch.
3. Clip light holder.
4. Plug end, probably a normal round German or India type.
5. In line switch.

I have about the same set up for reading, the difference is this, the length needs to be longer to enter the toilet. Then I am going to put the in line Switch close to the male plug, this will allow me to turn on the light without getting electrocuted.

I will be able to clip, hook, or hang the light, normally there is a broken light to use as a place to hook. The mirror is never easy, but I can hang a vanity mirror used by girls, I have one in my bag now.

This all needs to be above the sink area, if there is, or I would just do in the shower area.

I am always worried about this type of stuff, for some reason the majority of people do not understand basic electrical principles. Such as, do not stand in water barefooted while plugging something in,. but then again, this is easy for me and grammar evades me.

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