If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bag Lady

The amount of stuff I need to cart around these days is astonishing.  Some mornings I find myself hauling 3-4 bags out to the car.  I literally don't go anywhere without my Timbuktu.  It is loaded down with: an iPad, a moleskin, an iPhone, keys, wallet, pens, sunglasses, and reading glasses at a minimum.*  You will also usually find me hoisting a large backpack onto my back that carries my laptop, a power cord and an assortment of folders containing articles, student papers, and other "work."  Let's not forget the water bottle that needs to be with me at all times.  If the gym is in the plan (which it is most days) than there is a gym bag that contains a full change of clothes, shoes, toiletries and a brush.  If I'm going to the gym for yoga, I add another bag for my mat and strap.

Obviously none of this is necessary and yet it is.

I haven't carted this much stuff around since Angel was a baby/toddler.  Of course back then I didn't have a car and would need to strap my multiple bags onto his stroller and then take it up and down the subway steps.  The car is an improvement.

I remember a time, before Angel, when I rode my bike to work everyday with nothing but my keys, a few dollars in my pocket and my work apron.  I never thought I'd want those times back again but some days it seems the wiser lifestyle.  I was talking with colleagues today about the latest apps for doing literature searches.  Sorry, but I'm not interested in searching PubMed or Ebsco while waiting for a pedicure (like I have time for a pedicure).

Most of my "stuff" is work-related and I carry it with me both literally and figuratively.  There isn't a time when I can put my work down and not think about it.  My work is never left at the office and now, with the increases in technology, home is never really left at home either.  Like a turtle, my life is on my back.

*b can leave the house with all he needs stuffed into his pockets.  Men's pockets must be quite large because an iPhone doesn't fit in any of my jeans.

1 comment:

Annie said...

It's an accurate observation that we carry our work with us wherever we go; and since I can check my work e-mail from home, I seem too connected. I'm always carrying at least three satchels including a regular purse over my shoulder, juggling the many jangling keys on both my own keyring and my work lanyard with I.D., while carrying a cup of coffee. You've reminded me of those diaper bag days. It kind of does feel like that.