The Minima-List for Packing

I love love love the idea of being ready to jet set away.  Anywhere.  Somewhere.  Soon.  What would you bring with you if you had to leave right away?  Right now.  What kind of crap do you carry around with you all day in your bag?  If you’re like most of us, too much of nothing.

The same thing happens when we pack for a trip.  Think sleek.  Think small.  I know you may think I’m insane, but I am telling you, when you go whizzing out of the airport and get the only available cab, you’ll be thinking, “wow, that crazy chick was right!”  I mean it.

Pretend you’re packing for a weekend.  Small steps, small steps.  There is a method to this as well.  If you have what you need for a weekend, you can probably go for a month.

When you start packing, put everything you want to bring on the bed.  Leave for an hour.  Go back to said bed and then remove at least half of what’s sitting there.  On the off chance it may rain, you don’t need to bring an umbrella and rain coat.  What would be the worst thing that would happen if you were unprepared?  You might get wet.  An option would be to buy an umbrella from one of the vendors who will appear like mushrooms in wet corners of every street in the city.  Now, you’re dry AND you have a souvenir.  (See, I’m smart.)

Think rough and ruthless.  You don’t need to bring any “just in case” items.  Every time I have packed a “just in case” item I had more junk I had to bring home and wash after the trip.  I would have serious fantasies about leaving a trail of unwanted clothing.

Have you ever tried to re-pack your bag after you’ve been moving from hotel to hotel?  Ugh.  You will hate yourself because you’ll wonder what on earth was wrong with your logic when you packed All This Nonsense.

Here’s the bare minimum.  Passport, contact lenses and glasses.  Oh, and prescription drugs, you’ll need to take those.  I realize that this is extreme.  (Even too extreme for me.)  But what would happen if you packed those basics, a pair of undies, a light gauzy scarf, and another shirt?  Um, excuse me, but you would manage.

I’ve seen a plethora of research that says no one pays attention to what anyone else is wearing.  It’s rather disheartening, but true.

To prove my point, I have a challenge for all of us.  Wear the same two outfits alternated for a week.  Now.  Don’t be crazy and choose purple polka dotted pants.  You’ll need to go basic with darker colors.  Black skirt, gray pants, black sweater, navy top.  Now.  What to add….a scarf, a pair of funky earrings, a big and bold necklace.

Try it.  Tell me what happens.  I will be doing the same.  Maybe we’ll run into one another on the street.  We won’t even look twice.  (Except maybe to think, wow, what a snazzy human!)


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