Crossing oceans is no longer calculated in weeks, but in hours. We know this. Then, why is it when the conveyor begins regurgitating our luggage, the size of the bags looks like we’ve run away from home forever? These bags could easily stow away two small children.
Toss the big bag. You may think you need 5 pairs of shoes, 2 sweaters, 2 coats and enough face cream to open your own Este Lauder counter. But, it is so not true.
Let’s begin with Why Not.
Simply, it takes your time and it drains your energy. Your travel goal is to arrive back home exhausted with a bag full of dirty, smelly clothes in tow. If there is one thing in that bag that is still in pristine condition, you have failed the baggage exam. If it has only been worn once, you’ve barely made a passing grade.
Let’s talk Time: monster bags are your master. They take more of your time than a four year old. Never, never, never count on assistance. As Cher would say…it’s all you, babe. OK, that’s not exactly what she sang, but close enough. That bag is in your constant care for fear it rolls away, gets abducted, falls and hurts itself or just behaves in an unruly manner. Why put up with it when it doesn’t deserve your TLC? The morning after you lug this behemoth up the stairs of the train station, your back will convince you the error of your ways.
Bag Rule 1: If it doesn’t fit in the overhead, it doesn’t get to come out and play.
Let’s talk energy: you are not strong enough. Regardless of time in the gym, you cannot slay the Bag Monster. That cabbie won’t dump it into the trunk for you. Public transportation is insurmountable. The weather won’t cooperate when your slugging down the boulevard. Bottom line…that baby ain’t worth it. By the time you arrive at the hotel, all you want to do is crash. Big Bag, counter-productive.
Bag Rule 2: If you can’t lift it, toss it.
Bag size: if it qualifies as an overhead, buy it.
I hear that scream. Yes, there really is enough room in that tinny-tiny space for everything you need.
- 1 pair of walking shoes
- 2 pair of dark, washable pants (no jeans – I’ll explain in the next post)
- 2 tops (washable is your friend)
- 1 wrap or coat (depends on weather)
- make-up or creams
- 2 pair of socks
- curling iron if applicable
- electronic devices will go in your carry-on (a separate post)
Beware the Christmas Spirit! Every Christmas around the 22nd of December, I become infected with the Christmas Spirit. This is where I decide I haven’t bought enough kitsch for the family. I run out to the nearest mall and begin passing around my credit cards to my favorite merchant friends like licorice candy. This is a contagious disease and often infects us just before the closing-of-the-bag ceremony. We think: “what if I need those red spiked sling pumps?” And, in the bag they go on top of another sweater, pants, purse….. Soon the bag won’t close, we find a larger one and we’re a goner. The monster is ours to raise, feed and educate for the duration of our journey.
The cure is to throw out the Bag Monsters. Donate them to your neighbor’s next garage sale. Put them on the curb. Visit your local Salvation Army. Think of Bag Monsters as Belgium chocolates. Out of reach, no pounds on hips. If you don’t have it, you don’t pack it.