Travel afar is imminent and suddenly I have become totally dysfunctional. Once upon a time I threw a few scant items in a backpack a few hours before leaving and travelled to the other side of the world with open-ended plans. Why can’t I do that now?
From the backpack I graduated to the overhead carry-on and it’s pretty much always been that way since. I have always packed efficiently (have managed to do a tour of Europe with just what was in my carry-on suitcase) and try to adopt the business person’s method of traveling practical and light. As a matter of fact, when I have seen people in the airport waiting to check in with all their Stuff, I have silently scoffed. But now I am going on a ten-day trip via a very long flight and I am suddenly paralyzed with indecision. I am assuming this slight bit of insanity has come with age. I have become one of those people who I secretly mocked. I don’t want to leave anything out, just in case…..
Because I am carrying an instrument on the plane with me (this is a musical adventure), it means having to check my bag. Since I have to do this anyway, I made the decision to use the “next size up” suitcase. You would think it would have lots of extra space (for bringing Stuff back home). However, my open suitcase has been sitting on the floor in the next room for the last week and a half (at least), where things have rotated in and out of it, chosen and then discarded. What’s worse, it is filled up to the very top. What every happened to the free-spirited me?
Five pairs of pants? Nine shirts? Four pairs of pants? Five shirts? Long sleeve or short? What if I get cold? Do I really want to bring a sweatshirt and a sweater… just in case? Should I bring a fleece? What about a raincoat? Layers? How many layers? Should I bring just sneakers or should I add shoes just in case? What if I need to dress up? Am I bringing too much stuff? It’s ridiculous and it’s gotten out of control.
Then there is the carry-on backpack. Something to read. Headphones for music or movie. A little neck pillow. Snacks, just in case the airline food doesn’t cut it or just in case we get delayed. Little bottles of travel items to hold me over just in case my suitcase gets lost. In addition, I also have a little zip bag filled with every kind of medication for every possible malady I can imagine or have ever had in my entire life…. just in case.
Tomorrow morning I will take it all out of the suitcase again, lay it out on the floor, do some difficult elimination and then re-pack it yet again. I’m off on a what I anticipate could be a grand adventure. I am hoping on my return that Spring will be in full swing. I’ll write when I get back…………..