Thursday, July 9, 2015

Traveling light - Kristine Rolofson

I'm known--for better or worse--for my propensity to keep things simple.  I will experiment with complicated recipes, quilt patterns, book ideas, etc. but when all is said and done I'll analyze the situation and figure out how to do it faster, simpler easier next time.

So of course I married a man who can make anything complicated.  For instance, he read that purple food was full of anti-oxidants, so he went to the grocery store and bought beets and grapes and berries and heaven knows what else.  He brought it home, cooked it, put it in the blender and made a healthy purple drink.  As I looked at my purple-splattered walls and ceilings (the lid had flown off the blender at one  point), the kitchen piled with dirty pots and the undrinkable goop my husband was trying to choke down, the obvious question was, "Why didn't you just buy a quart of this stuff at the health food store?  Or better yet, take a supplement?"

Over the years we have both learned the fine points of "compromise", though that is something that has not been easy for either one of us.  After 45 years we've become pretty darn good at it!

Which brings me to our recent 3200-mile, 10-day road trip.  Do you see this?  The maroon suitcase is mine.  It holds clothes, my laptop, assorted cords and Kindles, plus make-up, shampoo, etc.  The rest of the bags--and these are not all of them--belong to my husband.

He hauls his exercise equipment, pillow, blanket, sleep apnea machine, laptop, vitamins, toiletries, food prep equipment, snacks (including oatmeal, oranges and avocados, which he eats for breakfast), water bottles, clothes and cooler into the hotel room every night.  We left his banjo at home this year, hoping to buy one on the road, or that would be on the rolling cart, too.

He's cheerfully oblivious to my teasing and eye-rolling, so despite the ridiculous (to my view) amount of bags, we really enjoy our summer road trips.  In the fall, when it's time to head back East, I will make my semi-annual attempt to organize and minimalize his bags, but it won't work.  I will give up--gracefully--and he will happily load up a rolling cart every morning and every night.  And we will both laugh.

Where are  you going this summer?  And how many bags will you take?  What can't you live without?












14 comments:

  1. This post was hilarious, LOL. I was laughing because in my household it's the other way around. My husband will have one small suitcase and I will carry at least 3 or 4 bags which will include books, magazines, food, etc., and I will insist on keeping the bag with my books and magazines at my feet in the passenger seat in the car along with my bulky pocketbook. I have to bring a cooler full of water and other necessary food items for the trip. My poor husband patiently waits and then loads up all of my stuff. He's always happy later though when we have food at the ready due to my diligent efforts at packing it.
    We went to Tennessee a couple of weeks ago and I packed much lighter this time around. I can't live without my large black shawl that I purchased from AVON at least 20 years ago. It's like a security blanket for me, and it keeps me warm in restaurants and cold air-conditioned establishments. ( :

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  2. I smiled at this post, too. Unlike Laurie, my experience is similar to Kristine's!

    When my husband and I travel, I pack enough outfits to wear a different one each day. This includes dresses, swimsuits, everything, and I generally include a couple of extra outfits to give me some choice. Yet my husband (who admittedly always dresses very well) generally takes 50% more than I do. It's difficult to complain when the net effect is that he always looks good!

    Thanks for the fun post, Kristine! :-D

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  3. When we first married, we were like you and your dh, Kristine. Over the years, I take more and he takes less so that it's pretty much the same. Except that any time we're gone overnight, my laptop is with me. I loved the post--and the picture!

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  4. This made me smile. A few years ago, I took a long trip with my aunt. I took a smallish suitcase with several changes of clothes and everything else I might need. She took what I came to call Moby Suitcase. That thing was so huge, we almost needed a forklift to move it around in spite of it having wheels. She didn't use even one fourth of the things she had packed in there.

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  5. I'm with you, Kristine...and live by the K.I.S.S. rule. And it's good to know I'm not the only one always looking for a better, simpler, quicker way to do things. (It's the reason I use a stopwatch when performing routine chores...and try to beat my own best 'time' the next time I fold towels, scrub a floor, or weed a flowerbed! LOL) Suitcases, closets, drawers...my husband routinely fills more of each than I do, and I'm happy to point it out when he says "I could do that!" while watching reality shows in which people are tasked with surviving on next to nothing! As for what *I* can't live without? Give me a hairbrush, a tube of mascara, and comfy shoes and I'm good to go. Here's hoping your summer road trips will be healthy, happy, and safe!

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  6. I tend to over-pack, and still the husband carries more than I do! And--after packing three or four different bags, he always has a stack of things he's ironed that he lays on top of all the other stuff. I don't know what he packs in the bags. But, as long as it fits in the car, and I have my laptop, kindle, ipad, ipod, phone, and assorted chargers... (We all have our issues!) ;-)

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  7. And men think women have too much stuff! This made me laugh, Kristine. Great photo!

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  8. Thanks for the early morning laugh. When my husband and I traveled, we camped. In the beginning, we started with a 10 X 10 tent in a Volkswagen bus. Simple enough. But as the years progressed, we went to a popup trailer, to a 17’ trailer, to a larger fifth wheel and finally a 45’ RV. Even though the RV had everything including a dishwasher and two TV’s, he stuffed the vehicle with extra grills, tents, tables, chairs, hammocks, and a TV for the outside. Clutter! Could never get him to K.I.S.S.

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  9. Kristine - that's so funny! I can so relate. When we used to take trips, Ron always packed twice as much as I did. When we worked together, I was ready to leave the house a good twenty minutes before he was. He analyzes everything to the point that whatever time might have been saved by it is also lost in it. But he's sweet and usually cheerful, so life is good. What I could not live without is this blog and the way all your wonderful personalities widen my world.

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  10. I always over pack, but have vowed the next time I fly I will only take something that can be paired with something else and wear 2 days! Thanks for my morning laugh.

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  11. We need to do a survey. LOL. My husband isn't as good as you, but he's definitely the light packer. And, I'm always over packing and running toward him last minute with one more bag. After all, it's vacation. I might find time to crochet or read 10 books (pre-kindle) and I must take every gadget electronic.

    And, as for what we pack for the ten year old, eek!

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  12. Well, I don't exactly have a husband...but over the years my packing has become worse and worse until my suitcase was rejected at the Barcelona airport last trip! My travel buddy wasn't terribly impressed when I emptied all my shoes into his bag. Oh, and two bottles of wine he was sure would break. (I blame my new and improved body weight on the inability to pack light....)

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  13. Years ago, my husband used to insist on taking "the coffin" whenever we traveled. But once airlines started charging for luggage, he developed a system for packing light. He loves those mesh packing cubes. He can go two weeks on the clothes in a bag the size of a coffee table book. But by the time he's checked off everything on his master database -- exercise bungees, assorted chargers, first aid, clothespins, toiletry bottles, etc. -- his bag is filled and I have to take some of the overflow. It's all part of the system. But it works.

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  14. You all are cracking me up over here!!

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