The Things She Carried

Unpacking and re-packing to leave the hotel, I did an itemization.

For one week in New York and surrounds:

11 pairs socks 14 pairs underpants
3 pairs tights 3 skirts
3 pairs pants 2 two pairs sweat pants
1 pair North-face waterproof pants
4 bras 1 top with a built in bra
4 tank tops 3 T-shirts with shortsleeves 5 shirts with long sleeves 3 pull on sweaters 2 cardigans
1 pair shoes-sneakers 1 pair shoes-black
1 pair boots-cute with high heel
1 pair boots- Sorel brand heavy duty duck boots, lined
1 grey wool coat
1 heavy coat
3 scarves,
2 hats
2 pair gloves

Too much?
This might be a little personal, but at home, I can easily wear one bra for a week without noticing. I wear the same sweaters and shoes for days on end. What’s the explanation for the overkill in my duffel? A couple of possibilities:

Reason One:

Packing method, which is to throw things I think I’ll need into the bag in the days preceding the trip. This is can lead to redundancies: I pull some socks, a skirt, a pair of pants from a drawer and throw them in. Then I do a load of laundry and as I am restocking, think, “Did I yet pack pants, a skirt, enough socks?…What the hell, you can never have too many socks.”

Reason Two (possibly with metaphorical connotations):

I don’t like being obligated in the present to say what I will want in the future. It could change. I prefer to decide at the last possible minute—but the consequence is that I am must then carry my choices with me. If you can’t commit, you can’t jettison—and I fear this extra weight slows me down, in my life as well as my travels.

One thought on “The Things She Carried

  1. I too don’t like to be limited when it comes to clothing choices and always over pack. However, I still seem to pack less than some people. I think that’s because I generally bring only one or two pairs of jeans to go with everything.

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