Being a Bolognesi
When a man walks into a room he brings his whole life with him.
Much easier said than done, Don. As my departure crawls closer I've moved on to one of the most difficult pre-departure phases: packing an entire year of my life into one suitcase. If only bringing your entire life in a suitcase were as easy as bringing your life history into a room.
Aer Lingus, the Irish airline on which I am flying allows for one bag with a 50 lb limit, one carry on and one stow away. When I went to France, I could only pack 50 lbs also, which I easily reached. But that was just for one semester. I now must fit an extra six months -- maybe more -- into the same amount. I also have to pack for more formal occasions, like the Ball in Vienna, job interviews (hopefully), winter, summer, random travel, etc. It isn't easy. But I guess the rest of Don's quote explains why it is difficult.
Yes Don, my packing method is flawed, because I want more. I want to pack more! I'm starting to sound like a girl, but I want to be able to pack two winter coats, one formal, one for activities. I want to pack casual shoes, two pairs of dress shoes, boots, sperrys, flip flops, running shoes. I want to pack a blazer, two suits and multiple dress shirts. So yes, Don -- who apparently is the arbiter of all things in life -- I am flawed because I want more, and I definitely won't get more. I'll cut it down to 50 lbs, likely with the help of those shrink bags.
Packing, while just a means to an end, really encompasses all of the emotions of moving away. You have to think of so many different potential circumstances in your future. Some you hope for. Some you hope against. You have to dig into your past travels. What did you need that you forgot? Why did you need it? This conjures memories, good and bad. You see your emaciated closet, your dogs sniffing the piles of clothes on the floor, looking questioningly at you. You realize that the next phase of your life is happening, which means leaving your family for who knows how long.
Packing is everything. Packing is fun. Packing isn't fun. Packing is exciting. Packing is terrifying. Packing forces you to think about your future, but makes you think about the past. Packing brings you closer to your goals, but takes you farther from your family.
Now I just have to fit all this stuff into the bags.
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