06 Oct I Haven’t a Thing to Wear!
Packing … the job we love to hate! And I’m procrastinating as I type. It’s six days until we leave on my 60th birthday cruise of the Caribbean, and the most I’ve done is chosen the suitcases. I wish the rest of the packing would be as easy.
Choosing clothes is the hardest, at least for me. I’d be thrilled if I could pack everything in my wardrobe, but QANTAS said 30 kilos only! On the other hand, P-i-C would be happy wearing shorts and a t-shirt daily; not worrying if they were coordinated or not. So, I’ll need to help him pack too, if we want to be allowed into the dining room!
We’re away for twenty days; onboard the ship for twelve, three days flying (because we lose one whole day on our return flight … somewhere), two days in Miami, and three days in San Francisco. I’ve googled the weather in all three places, and it ranges from hot and humid on the cruise (with a chance of hurricanes) to count down to winter in San Francisco. Now you can see why I need my whole wardrobe … I need all seasons of clothes. And being a Libran, I need to coordinate, and that’s where the problem begins.
We started with P-i-C’s wardrobe and chest of drawers. Since his retirement, he has put on a kilo or two, thus necessitating the next size up in trousers and shirts. So, we needed to see what still fitted. The result was three big bags of clothes for the charity shop, and very little for the suitcase. Therefore, a trip to the shopping centre for some new clothes was required. I sent him straight to the changeroom, while I scoured the shop for trousers, dress shirts, shorts, and t-shirts, collared and crew-neck, for him to try on. Thirty minutes later, and a dent in his credit card, we walked out with several bags. And once you have a new wardrobe, new shoes are also required; or at least that’s what I informed him. Fortunately, he capitulated once I told him I’d shout lunch once the ordeal was over.
On our return, it was my wardrobe that was attacked. I fluctuate in weight, which is a very nice way of saying I own clothing in at least two sizes, so it was my turn to strip down to my underwear to see what fitted. Those that did were put to one side, and it appeared another shopping trip was in order. A woman can never have too many clothes! And, as the colours this season are different from previous summers, with the lovely mustard and greens playing a significant role, it also came to light the need for some coordinating shoes as well, even if I was packing the usual pairs of black and cream, go-with-any-outfit shoes.
With that done, it was time to set the washing machine in motion. Unfortunately, that also meant a HUGE pile of ironing. Although P-i-C’s ironing skills have improved, shirts and trousers still confound him, so I took over ironing those, leaving him with the pile of our t-shirts and shorts to do. His folding skills, however, still need work, though it is A+ for effort. The result … we now have enormous piles of clothes on the spare bed, next to the suitcases, just waiting to be placed into the zipped travel bags once I’ve recorded each item on my packing list.
Why do I have a packing list? Why am I so OCD about it? I don’t know, to be perfectly frank, but I think it goes way back to boarding school days when we had to tick off the list of items that were required, ie. 7 pairs of Bonds white full-brief underwear, and those were checked … no sexy or even coloured underwear for us. (By the way, I definitely don’t wear those now, preferring matching lingerie!) So the list stays, and it is typed up once all the items are in the suitcase to make sure we return with what we packed. Unless, I decide an item is no longer necessary somewhere along the trip, usually because other clothes have been purchased … as one does whether we need them or not. The list, therefore, comes back like a failed school assignment; red marks and crosses everywhere, and added notes at the end. Once a teacher …
In hindsight, and this writing has been very therapeutic, it appears my problem with packing is either a case of stress brought on by unresolved issues with being sent off to boarding school OR, and this is more likely the case, I’m just unable to decide what I need to take and always over-pack. Big sigh …