Thursday, July 27, 2006

Seconds and Stuff

I finished the second pair of Kid’s Ribby Socks for my granddaughter’s birthday. I figure since she’ll be two she needs two pairs. And both pairs take about as much time to knit as one single grownup sock. I was cutting it really close with the leftover yarn from my Sea Socks and had to join new yarn on one sock. Twice. (I see a theme here.) They look pretty good though so I’m happy.

I was thinking about purses and bags today and what we put in them. Although I have many tote bags and several smaller bags, I usually use my MEC daypack. It holds everything I need plus my shopping and leaves my hands free. With the waist strap on it doesn’t even put any pressure on my neck and shoulders. This effect is hard to beat which is probably why I haven’t yet made or bought anything that works as well. Except that I’m really really bored of my black nylon cordura backpack. It has no individuality, no pizzazz, no “me”. What to do?

I have a gazillion things that I carry around with me, most of which is quite important otherwise I wouldn’t carry it. It’s not like I can leave everything in the car like those who drive everywhere. A small bag isn’t very useful. Must have space for all this:

Large heavy wallet with all the usual money, coins (we Canadians have lots of big coins!), bank/credit cards, ID, membership cards, coupons, pen, blank cheques etc.

Big key ring with lots of keys, including several for the house and both vehicles (even though I don’t drive I like to be able to get inside!)

Emergency stuff such as a cell phone, my Epi Pen in case of wasp sting or other serious allergic reaction, antihistamine tablets ditto, Advil in case of migraine (if I get it fast enough it goes away quickly), tissues, extra batteries for my hearing aids and a travel case for them if I need to take them off.

Sunny weather gear such as my hard glasses case with sunglasses (to be swapped with regular specs), water bottle, extra sun screen, sometimes a hat.

Rainy weather needs an umbrella.

My Palm T/X which includes everything from shopping lists, addresses and phone numbers, calculator and clock to books, patterns, and games etc. and (optional) earphones for listening to podcasts.

Shopping bag for when the backpack gets too full.

Optional (if I’m going to be anywhere I can work on it) my sock knitting box that includes the socks-du-jour, knitting needles, ruler, darning needles, and emergency crochet hook.

That last item pretty much fills up my backpack! I can’t think of anything I could really eliminate and lots more that I could add. For instance, I used to have a mini flashlight and my Swiss Army knife in there, but I recently took them out to save weight. I also had bandaids and handiwipes, but took them out too. I don’t bring a water bottle unless it’s very hot or I’m going to be somewhere where I can’t get anything to drink. That’s one large and heavy item! My Epi Pen is kind of large and takes up space but at least in summer and early fall, I’d hate to get stung and not have it with me. Last time I ended up in hospital for 3 hours; next time could be fatal. The cell phone is a pain since I never turn it on unless I need to use it, but it has come in handy occasionally to call T-Man. So tell me please, how do those people you hear about travel around the world with one little pack? I have trouble traveling around the city like that! If it were up to me, I’d be followed everywhere by a team of porters with 10 steamer trunks carrying all my indispensable items. Like those intrepid Victorian explorers with their silver tea service and their corsets and gowns to change into for dinner in the middle of the African bush or something. OK, maybe that’s a bit excessive. How about just one steamer trunk? With room for the groceries?


Anonymous said...

i believe you only need add a guide book, polysporin, camera [optional], one spare pair of undies and socks, [wait - you're knitting those!] and you would be all ready to go. you even already have a loving relationship with your pack!! you could be ready to go in 5 minutes.

btw, i love your sock 'pattern', or is it a formula? a recipe? it's all i use now. no more counting - Yippee!! and who doesn't love magic numbers??? your writing is very clear, logical, and friendly. [I can thank the intrepid and wise Pearl at my LYS for my emancipation from crappy sock patterns - she led me to the promised land of your formula.] and Louisa, i must tell you, your dolls are exquisite. so beautiful. i can see their peaceful hearts.
blog on, world traveller.

Unknown said...

The search for the perfect bag goes on and on, doesn't it? I've been thinking of getting some plain canvas, paint it and make it into a knitting bag.

I'll bet you can make your own really cool backpack with all the pockets you need to keep everything organized.