Monday, January 07, 2008
Luggage as metaphor
I'm leaving home for a month (note to would-be burglars: all my valuables have been stored elsewhere). I have several hours before I leave and everything I need to do is done.
For the past week, and even longer, I've made piles of things I wanted to be sure to take, little things that would come in handy, like a camping headlight for reading in bed, books, little unlabeled plastic bottles of this & that, tiny notebooks, old bicycle route sheets and maps to plan training rides for Velo Girls, computer glasses, warm slippers - you get the idea.
Some of it goes in the big suitcase, some in my camera bag, some in my carryon backpack, some in my hidden wallet, some in my shoulder bag.
And here's where it gets tricky. When I want, say, my sunglasses, which bag will they be in? In Paris I'll remove all my clothes into a loaned CostCo bag (thanks, Jill - everything fits perfectly!) and store the hard case out of the way. So all those odds and ends of things will have to find their everyday home.
I know when I travel by bicycle life becomes so much simpler. Handlebar bag: wallet, glasses, little stuff; port pannier: bicycle stuff; starboard pannier: civilian stuff; rack trunk: tools, book, camera, etc. Nothing leaves it's assigned space over the course of the trip and I can put my hand on whatever I need without going through every bag.
In my house, it's not so simple. I've lived here for many, many years. Odds and ends have accumulated. If something first found it's home, say, near the phone, and I "reorganize" and move it, it might as well have gone in the garbage, I'll have to replace it. And then I'll have two, maybe three, of the same dumb thing.
Already, my travel bags mimic my home, and at this moment I'm already not sure where I put what. Somehow, I don't think I really care. I will just laugh when I have to go from bag to bag to find my damn sunglasses!
3 hours and I'm outta here!