You would not believe what I find in my handbag. Somehow, the damn thing just gets out of control.
Business cards. Old receipts. Lila hands me odds and ends, and I just pop them in the bag. Things I want to keep but don’t know what to do with them. All kinds of things end up at the bottom of my bag. Some are useful. Others, junk.
My bag, I should add, triples as handbag, computer bag and carry on and has been through a lot. It’s seen Burning Man, countless road trips from NYC to Atlanta and back. Most recently a trip to Aruba, Panama and the US which included a very long stopover in Bogota.
Before every major trip we take I clean and organize. I like to think of it as a testament to the need to move on.
Now, I’m preparing for a trip to Bolivia. What did I find when I cleaned my bag this time?
These little things are endlessly useful for Burning Man. From attaching tarp to poles for a shade structure, to securing your tent, connecting a cup handle to utility belt, bondage classes and excellent for tying, securing or binding just about anything. Very handy.
Now that I’m no longer at Burning Man, I still use them in dozens of situations. Bracelets for Lila, collars for her stuffed kitty — which honestly, is so tight, it seems to border on bondage as well. Quick suitcase fixes, holding computer cables and so much more.
Half Eaten String Cheese, Still In Wrapper
I’m not proud. I guess it ended up here somewhere between Harrisburg and Roanoke, but this isn’t the first time I’ve found food remains festering here. I also found a candy cane and ate it.
I used to carry these everywhere, always. Blow one up and Lila is occupied for hours. They’re also great when playing with a group of kids, because their floaty, bouncy ways ensure that all children playing have a chance at the ball. Since Lila turned 8 years old, though, she’s more interested in books. So the balloons will be replace with an Ipad with books for everyone.
Bike Cover In Ziplock
Another prop from Burning Man. I got mine at Black Rock Bicycles, where we rented our bikes. The owner’s wife makes them. Mine is purple on top with a many colored tie-dyed edge. It’s still filthy from dust storms, and there’s an inch of playa dust at the bottom of the bag which oddly makes me wax nostalgic. How quickly a girl forgets how corrosive dust can be.
Two Pairs Of Underwear.
One Lila’s. One mine. Both clean. You never know when you’ll need them, and they’ll go back in the bag.
These along with incense, a bike lock, jeweled heart and butterfly stickers, candles (Why do I always have random candles in my bag?), ski lift ticket, a few rocks, seeds, leaves from various trees and a pack of two inch nails seem find their ways into my bag.
This is my process. I live life, let things build up and then eventually sort and evaluate to decide what stays with me, what will be thrown out and what must be left behind. The first time I did this, before leaving New York, I found this to be heavy doing, full of nostalgia. I’ve learned how to let go more easily now.
Now, I don’t feel right traveling until I have divested myself of all the extras. It leave me open to receive the new.