Meet the newest addition to my technological arsenal: Tim the travel kettle (I already have Tom the navigator so I'm trying to build some camaraderie in the naming). In a bid to cut costs I've taken to making my own brew. On the downside, the kettle takes 3/4 to (almost) boil so I have to predict my thirst patterns well in advance to avoid the ever-present danger dehydration.
But it's worth it. Instead of the 2 euros a time tea stops I am now on an almost no-cost solution! When I was young, my Gran trained me on the art of collecting the spare sugar sachets, milk packets and tea bags that cafes leave lying around.
Other money-saving measures I'm employing at the moment include making sandwiches for lunch from the breakfast buffet, wrapping them in napkins and subtly sliding them into your manbag while distracting the waitress with a well-thrown croissant.
I'm also saving money on urination by avoiding the 50 cent charges in service stations, which can really add up. I now go discretely behind the petrol stations, or in a plastic bottle in the car while driving if I'm late for a show, but this is taking some practice and I've had a few close calls.
Another idea is book swapping, once I've finished my latest thriller. I've no space to keep the ones I have and libraries aren't an option.
Now I have the travel kettle, and to achieve true self-sufficiency, I'm thinking about some kind of water-filtration system with the bottles I've filled. I have over 20 now - it's just like being back in the camper van. I'll keep you up-to-date.