Tomorrow we head out to Atlanta and with all trips I feel like I’ve got a million things I need to do – important things like wash the towels, do the dishes, sweep… That’s how I prepare for a trip by tidying everything up to death. Somewhere in there I’ll get packed. The actual packing will take about 10 minutes tops, so it’s not high on my list. What’s going to bog me down though are the specialty bags I’ll be lugging along.
Normally bag packing involves throwing open the suitcase on the bed, standing by the dresser and doing several lay-ups to get my clothes inside. Since this is a science fiction convention, being wrinkle free isn’t a priority – just wad and go. Ok, since we’re talking about me, being wrinkle free is never a priority, which probably explains a lot about my life. Anyway, for this trip I have to pack a new camera bag and then a Myth Wear bag (as strongly recommended by Lynn in her survival guide to conventions in Sequential Tart http://www.sequentialtart.com/archive/aug04/art_0804_7.shtml – Lynn, you think I don’t pay attention). Both of the bags have lots of little pockets – little pockets that demand attention and filling and which is what’s going to slow me down. See, your average suitcase has a little pouch on the inside and a couple on the outside. I use the outside compartments for things I need to display to check-in type folks – my “immediate needs” pockets, the inner compartment for things that I don’t want rolling around and that big space for the aforementioned wadded up clothes. This new Myth Wear bag has spaces for sketchpads, pens, and a cell phone and must accommodate everything I would keep in my purse. It’s big enough and flat enough to keep autographs safe (I’m coming for you, George Takei) and it can hold two drinks. Of course, I won’t be packing those before I get on the plane, security might fear I’m carrying a “bumb” (do an internet search, I’m not giving you that one). Then there’s the camera bag – places for film, my strap and the manual that HAS to make it there and back otherwise we may have trouble. Then there is the dilemma of whether I put the canisters into the camera bag or do I insert the film into my strap now? Do I even want to remove the strap? These are my special issues that will trip me up for hours. This is truly why I love my purse. Like my suitcase, there are few pocket choices; I just dump everything in there and go.
The next thing that is going to kill me is my traveling anxiety. I don’t mind going places or going by plane, I just get extremely anxious about leaving. I know tonight I’ll set the alarm clock only to find I haven’t slept and then I’ll feel like a train wreck the rest of the day. Did you know sodas do not contain enough caffeine? And the little sugar high won’t last long enough? We won’t even mention the sugar crash that follows. Honestly, on trips like these, I wish I could stand coffee. Who am I kidding, on trips like these I wish I could stand espressos. In fact, I wish I could main line espresso. Let’s go a step further – I’d like to mainline some espresso right now.
I guess I’ll run off to make my to-do list and enjoy the longest day ever. Oh, in case you’re trying to figure out what to get me for Christmas (aka my birthday) something I know you’re all concerned about – I want an iPod (the one with the video) and a laptop (one that was built in the last year – not the Compaqs people lugged around in 1987 and that some of you are wicked enough to try and unload on me). You can pool your cash! Let me know who wants to coordinate and I’ll exchange your e-mails. Hey, it’s the least I can do. Shucks, it’s the least YOU could do. I’m fairly certain those items would make my trips that much more enjoyable and I know each and every one of you would be happier knowing how happy I was. Honest! Right, off to make the to-do list and my “I love you Ghost Hunters and Myth Busters” signs.
Just an FYI – noon isn’t for 4 hours.