Then, over the course of the year, came the trips home, where one weekend in Wales would require hauling a massive pink suitcase onto the train in order to accommodate the number of clothes that needed washing. And let's not even mention moving home, when I made perhaps my biggest packing faux pas. The plan was simple: Dad would take most of my stuff home in the car, leaving behind only what I needed for the next two weeks, which I would then bring home on the train. Simple enough, except when you forget to send your large hardback dictionary home in the car, and you end up dragging a suitcase, two holdalls, a rucksask and a handbag around a crowded train, while strangers comment on the poor girl who was "carrying her whole life around".
And then came the summer, during which I have essentially lived out of a suitcase, not really bothering to unpack and repack during the sporadic days at home between adventures and holidays. Now, once again, I have to pack. This time for Canada.
Now, I know that I should be grateful that I get to travel and go to university in another country and all sorts of excitement and that I shouldn't complain, but I really don't like packing. Some people are good at packing, and organised with packing. When my dad's colleague went on holiday, he was packed a good week in advance; a man from church is known to do a practice pack a week or so before he actually has to pack; one friend of my sister, when packing for two consecutive trips, even drew up spreadsheets. That's far too organised for my liking. I much prefer to just wander around and pick things up and decide whether or not it's going. There's one slight problem with this method: it has turned me into a notorious overpacker, for, I reckon, these reasons.
- I'm indecisive. Really indecisive.
- I like my clothes. Now, don't get me wrong; I'm no fashion icon, but I do like the clothes I have, and I have a lot of them. I'm not the kind of person who just buys clothes because they're cheap or in fashion or whatever. Everything I buy, I really like, which makes choosing all the more difficult.
- I'm the queen of "it might come in handy one day". I look at everything and imagine its potential purpose, however unlikely. Not long ago, I justified keeping a top that I haven't worn in years because it might come in handy if I ever have to dress up as a zebra. Yeah.
So, in less than 24 hours I am leaving for Gatwick, and this is my progress so far: