Just In Case

I used to find it a great deal easier to pack for a business trip than ever I did for a holiday. My working day would dictate my dress: business suits, dress shirts, ties, belts, pants, dark socks and black shoes. There: all done. Oh, nearly forgot, my toilet bag. The thought of packing for a family holiday however seems like a much more complicated project, often including other people and their opinions. What to wash and iron in preparation, ensuring that one doesn’t wear this or that T shirt before the packing process even begins. My greatest worry about filling a case is the potential likelihood of running out of something when one is in a ‘strange’ land. Its all too easy to forget that one can buy underpants in Paris or Barcelona. One must remember: one is not Marco Polo. Ah yes, true, but what if one were to travel to somewhere more exotic, where they have unusual insects and the people don’t tend to speak English. That’s where ‘packing paranoia’ sets in. Instead of taking six pairs of brightly coloured socks or shirts one might take an extra three pairs and those old Hard Rock Café tops: just in case. The same principal extends to ones entire wardrobe. Then there’s everything from those five year old flip-flops that have only ever been on your feet twice because the plastic thing between your toes hurt, to the family medical box which ends up the size of a case in itself and includes more mysterious remedies for absolutely everything than the average branch of Boots. I find wearing shorts a bit of a bother too. Are my old blue shorts just that little bit too short for a man of my age? The worst bit by far has to be the moment when the house is securely locked and everything and everyone is in the car just sitting on the drive in total silence. Have we got everything?

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