Sunday, December 29, 2013

the perils of packing

Packing for an entire semester in Scotland is one of the hardest voyages I've ever packed for. I pride myself on being a relatively light packer...but I needed chastising for what I was trying to fit into the limitations of my one checked luggage and one carry on. 
My original plan included seven pairs of shoes. One of those would have been on my feet on the plane...but that left six pairs of shoes within the confines of my baggage. I'm crazy. 
I skimmed it down to five. One pair of brown riding boots (these will be on my feet), my Sperrys, black flats, black combat boots, and my Nikes tucked into my backpack. Oh, and a partridge in a pear tree. 
From there I focused on what clothing essentials I NEEDED. My friend Tracy, who has done this all before, reminded me to pack what I find myself wearing most often in America. I'm not going to suddenly become a daring fashionista solely because my natural habitat has changed. 
I don't need to bring every pair of underwear I own because my favorite ones will still be the same in Europe, no matter how long I foresee myself putting off laundry day. 
If I never wear that one pair of uncomfortable jeans now, I certainly won't when I'm walking even more in an unfamiliar country. 
Pants are going to be a staple in my wardrobe while abroad...I prefer keeping my bottom half covered, especially in such a freezing environment. However, I need to start calling that particular article of clothing "trousers." Apparently "pants," in the UK, refers to one's underwear. Therefore, announcing one isn't wearing any pants is far more scandalous. Good thing for me, I don't say that often. I pared down my trousers to 4 pairs of jeans, not counting the ones I'll be wearing on the plane. 2 blue, 1 black, and 1 grey. Not to mention, one pair of capri sweatpants, a pair of yoga pants, and four pairs of leggings. 
Tracy looked on from FaceTime as I miserably threw tshirts into the "not going to Europe pile." I envisioned myself running every morning, perhaps on the way to a quaint Scottish market, but realistically...I'll be recovering from a hangover most mornings (kiddingbutnot). I don't need three Thunder tshirts or four shirts repping OU. And ALL of my Nike shorts is a little excessive. 
I begrudgingly selected a few favorites and hoped the rest wouldn't be offended. 
And, after a THIRD attempt at packing, the suitcase, filled to the brim with warm garments and packages of ramen tucked into crannies, zipped tightly shut. 
My underthings could potentially smell like feet since they are bunched into the toes of my shoes and my shirts will undoubtedly be wrinkled from rolling, but they'll be there, in Europe, with me, the girl who, if you count the scarf, will be wearing six layers of clothing on the aircraft. 
self portrait: thank you, Taylor C., for the inspiration
Don't ask A Very Lucky Girl to bring back souvenirs. There is no room at the inn. 

PS-my perfume didn't fit. Can't wait for all of my new European friends to smell me!

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