Packing Day

Well, after  months of preparation, vaccinations and planning, it’s finally time to pack that suitcase! A week from today, we’ll be waking up in Beijing, China! The mere thought causes me to tremble, both with apprehension and excitement.

There was a time in my life when there was no way – NO WAY – I could EVER have imagined myself going anywhere, much less to China. There was a long stretch of time when there was no food in my fridge, no money to take the bus to my doctor and therapists’ appointments (which meant walking the 10kg twice a week with little or no food in my tummy), no hope of taking the train home to spend Christmas with my family. There was a long stretch of time when there was no hope period.

Flash forward thirty years, and here I am, getting ready to pack my suitcase for China.

China’s never even been on my radar (or bucket list) of places to visit (it had never occurred to me that it could ever be possible to go!) But it has been on hubby’s list forever. He’s turning 72 soon, and when this tour came up at the perfect price, it seemed like a good time to finally make his dream come true. And so, China, here we come!

Packing that suitcase is a challenge. We’re going for several weeks, and I like variety. But we have long-term weight restrictions to contend with…23kg for the first and return flights, but only 20kg for the several internal flights we’ll be taking within China. Our tour company, who have been doing this for enough years to know how much we’re going to want to shop over there, strongly urged us to only start out with 15kg (a little over 30lbs). Sounds sufficient, until you start putting in all the non-clothing items that all of our months of research insists we should bring with us.

Insect repellent, check. Every medication you can think of (including two different antibiotics), check. Batteries for the MP3, alarm clock, flashlight and two cameras, check. Umbrellas, check. Raincoats, check. Sunhat, check. Sunblock, check. Binoculars for the Yangtzee Cruise and Great Wall, check. On and on the check list goes. Until suddenly I realize that we’re almost up to that 15kg, and I still don’t have any clothes in there! Yikes!!

So that’s my to-do list today. Pack enough clothes to satisfy my penchant for variety, while staying within that 15kg range. Not to mention packing for several different climates for the different regions we’ll be visiting. Oh, and something special for supper with the captain on the cruise ship. Hmmm. The tour guides strongly emphasize this as an essential item to pack, so how to get creative with that one without sacrificing space for the stuff I’ll need everyday.

I love a challenge. But what I love most of all is that life has brought me so far – feels like a kazillion miles – from those very dark desperately poor despairing days to this challenge of trying to figure out how to pack a suitcase for China. Who could have imagined it?!

As I stand over my suitcase today, getting ready to fill it with some yummy new clothes that I splurged on just for this trip, I thank God with all my heart for Father Basil (and others) who told me way back then to keep walking because we never know what’s around that next bend. He was absolutely right! At the time, it felt like I was banging my head against an impossibly impenetrable brick wall. Who knew that never giving up would eventually bring me to the Great Wall of China!!

Life IS grand! Never ever give up.

Now let’s go fill that suitcase!

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Copyright © Sharon C. Matthies, Meanderings (blog), 2012. All rights reserved.

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About Sharon

I love to write. I love to write myself into being right here right now. Writing releases something in me that needs wings, writing opens doors and windows that I often don't even realize are possible, writing helps me breathe out the dusty old, and to breathe in the new and possible. My hope is that maybe writing here in this blog will bring new light into these dusty old hallways and help me to clear out the thinking processes and mindsets that just don't work for me anymore. I seek to breathe new light and life into the nooks and crannies of a soul that has been feeling somewhat lost and frayed because of the last few patches of road I've had to travel.
This entry was posted in coping, depression, empowerment, faith, gratitude, happiness, hope, inspiration, journey, mental health, new horizons, perseverance, positive, self help, survival, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Packing Day

  1. angelika says:

    Whatever you do…don’t forget your camera! I forget my cosmetic bag, and felt so naked till I could buy an eyeliner and lipstick. Funny, I pack like there is no store at …wherever we go. I know how hard it is to pack for different climates. the best is the layer look. Oh yes! You’ve come a long way Babe!


    • Sharon says:

      Thanks Angelika! Re the camera, that’s why I haven’t taken any pictures lately…I’m afraid to take the camera out of my travel purse in case I forget to put it back, lol.

      I can’t wear makeup, it triggers my rosacea (on eyelids and face), so i just put sunblock on and hope that the sun will kiss my cheeks with a bit of colour. And I haven’t yet met a lipstick that my lips like, so a small tube of lip gloss in my purse will have to do. That leaves more room in my luggage for another blouse.

      Yes, it has been a very very long road, but boy, do I love where it’s led to in my here-and-now!!! I feel like I’m living proof of what can happen when we don’t give up and keep moving forward, even if it’s only at a slow crawl!


  2. I’m so excited for you, Sharon. I’m sure you’re going to have an awesome time!


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