As I get ready to leave the cozy condo by the river later this week, I have been vexed by the dilemma of what to pack. I'll be gone for two weeks and Paris, according to the weather websites, is cold while Madrid and Lisbon are warmer. Last night I managed to lay out precisely what I think I should bring. Everything can be worn with at least one other item and layering has become my M.O. For Paris it's black, black and more black with a little hint of color now and again, then I plan to become more colorful in sunny Spain and Portugal. It seems like before each trip I become fixated with some "have to have" thing that consumes precious planning time (and trip budget) and yet I am compelled to scurry about the city in search of said "have to have". Last time it was a messenger bag. I had to have one, in cognac, the right length, in leather naturally and reasonably priced. Never found it. I never find a lot of my "have to haves" because for the most part they exist only in my head.
This time my "have to have" was a pair of Puma-esque Euro-sporty shoes, preferably in black with a little grey somewhere. Oddly as I was searching about the interwebs for these babies, lo and behold, Lansky 126 in the Peabody Hotel sent an email advertising their TOMS shoes. Now, I think the concept of this company is great : when you buy a pair of TOMS shoes, they donate a pair to a needy child. What's not to love about that? The shoes themselves however were not the Puma-esque Euro-sporty type I had in mind so my search continued. If TOMS started making these with a ribbon that tied around the ankle I'd be all over it. I'll have to re-visit these after the trip. Speaking of travel and downtown shopping, the gift shop in the Peabody Hotel carries a large selection of Vera Bradley bags, jewelry rolls, wristlets, make up cases, etc. that are ideal for travelling.
A funny thing that happens when I am on a "have to have" quest is that I invariably find something that usurps the "have to have" by becoming the "must, must have" which is never anything close to what the original "have to have" is. This is what I've ended up buying:
Yes I say, better than a Puma-esque Euro sporty shoe. Back to packing, I will obviously have to shod myself with these for the plane as I don't think I can reasonably fit them into a suitcase plus they are heavy. Some readers will remember a past post I did about the One Bag packing concept, at which I scoffed and maintain my smug attitude. Lots of talk about "core objects" and "bundle wrapping", a very complex system for one that would have you pack almost nothing. It threw me over the edge when it mentioned that "jeans make poor travelling clothes". Quoi? How so? Terrible news for me since almost every outfit includes a pair of skinny jeans. Does One Bag not understand that jeans are the one universally chic item of clothing on earth? Why, the revered classic Chanel jacket is oft times paired with jeans and a pair of beautiful heels. No matter, I shall disregard this rejection of jeans as a legitimate travel garment.