Expat Magazine

Never Leave Packing Till the Last Minute

By Expatmum @tonihargis
So I'm packing for a fairly long trip - which means major planning on my part. What (if any) parties am I going to? How much walking will I be doing? Do I have shoes to go with every pair of trousers?  Have I accounted for every type of weather I might experience? Does everything in that suitcase match at least two other garments? etc etc

I usually make lists that end up looking like Venn diagrams as I strive to ensure that the stuff that goes in will serve a multitude of purposes and will be worn. (Last year I came home with three items that never saw the light of day. A venial sin in the world of global traveling.) 

I have learnt over the years, never to wait till the last minute to physically pack the suitcase. All the lists and organization in the world can't erase the precious moments needed to fill that case. If you leave it till the day before travel (I can't even contemplate leaving it till the actual day of travel), bad things happen. 

In the past, these bad things have included - 

- idiot worker from next door causing my basement to flood and me having to spend half a day sorting that out

- child that was too sick to travel but also needed to see a doc and get a note for the airline to change our flight

- locking self out of house and having to go to husband's office to get key (a good three hours wasted)

- snapped braces and an emergency trip to the orthodontist (plus lots of begging)

- notification that equipment (ie. plane) had been changed and now me and three kids are spread out all over the cabin and no kids' meals reserved. That one took a while to resolve

This year however, it's a new one  - 

- youngest son, who's traveling with me, seems to have grown. (Well, obviously that part's not new but it did sneak up on me). His shoes and clothes are too big to fit into the small suitcase I usually use for him., Argh. Racing round house looking for alternative. Where have all the other bags gone? Ah yes, they'd be with my now-working daughter who lives far away. 

Finally found another large suitcase which no one else seems to be claiming. Not sure we really need that much space but it will come in handy when I go bonkers in the shops in the UK. I may be able to take an extra pair of "nice shoes" who knows? 

Right. Back to work! 

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