It is finally the June/July holidays and, as of Monday, I will officially be home and relaxing in good old East London. Unfortunately, before I reach that oasis, there is one crucial task that has to be done which I am dreading. Yes indeed, I have to pack. Now please, before you start thinking that this is just me being melodramatic and stop reading this post, just listen to my reasoning behind my hatred for this four-lettered word.
When a normal human being goes away for a two-week period, he or she probably packs only what is necessary and leaves the rest to chance. Not me. There is an entire mental checklist that has to be followed before I even begin to place things into the suitcase (and I only have one, which is going to add to my dilemma). For most trips, my thought process normally goes something like this:
It’s going to be cold, so I have to pack at least 5 pairs of bottoms – one for each day of the week. So that’s two pairs of jeans, a pair of trousers, and two pairs of leggings. But the one pair of jeans that I packed is quite formal so I’d better put in another pair for day-to-day wear. And whilst I have two pairs of leggings, what if I decide to wear a dress that leggings won’t go with? I’d better put in three pairs of stockings ... no, make that four in case one gets a ladder in it. So that’s 3 pairs of jeans, 1 pair of trousers, 2 pairs of leggings, and 4 pairs of stockings. But then, I’m also going to be going to gym while I’m home, so I’d better add another pair of exercise leggings ... and some shorts in case I go for a run. Right, so that’s 3 pairs of jeans, 1 pair of trousers, 3 pairs of leggings, 4 pairs of stockings, and 1 pair of shorts.
OK, so that’s bottoms down, now onto the tops. Obviously I need to pack at least 5 tank tops to wear under jerseys, plus 3 extra tops to exercise in. Then I need 5 jerseys, plus 4 long-sleeved tops to wear under them in case it gets really cold. And since I’m packing long-sleeved tops, I may as well put in 3 more short-sleeved jerseys that I can wear the long tops under. So that totals up to 8 tank tops, 5 long-sleeved jerseys, 4 long-sleeved tops, and 3 short-sleeved jerseys.
Now dresses: I think I’ll need 3 winter dresses that can be worn during the day. But then, I’ll put in 2 other dresses that can be worn in the evening. But it’ll probably be too cold to wear just that so add an extra jacket and cardigan to go with those dresses. And of course I’ll need scarves, and what’s the point in packing just one when I have so many pretty ones to choose from? So let’s just put in 4 scarves to be safe. Now if I’m thinking about evening, I need to consider shoes. I’ll obviously be wearing one pair of boots and pack another pair for the day, but what about heels? If I pack that dress to go out in, I’ll need my black heels, but the grey one’s would look so much better with leggings and a jacket. And remember that the one pair of jeans has to be worn with a certain pair of shoes, so I have to remember those. And if I’m taking both grey and black pairs, then I’ll need different handbags to match. Plus a bag to match the boots I’m wearing on the plane. So let’s see if I’ve got this right: that makes it 5 dresses, 1 jacket, 1 cardigan, 4 scarves, 4 pairs of shoes, and 3 handbags. Oh, and a pair of takkies to exercise in ... so make that 5 pairs of shoes.
This is before I’ve even got onto the toiletries, make-up, jewellery, hair accessories, underwear, and pyjamas, and already I’ve got enough packed to clothe the whole of East London put together (very well I might add!). Not to mention the agony of trying to decide exactly which dress will go with what jersey, as well as attempting to accommodate for all possible occasions and weather conditions. This is why, my dear readers, I hate packing above all other things. So much so, that I have spent most of the day putting it off by doing laundry, washing dishes, and partaking in other such mundane tasks. And now, I am going to take a nap - thinking about what I'm going to pack sure is exhausting!