“Are you leaving me?” asked my husband one night as he surveyed the contents of my closet on our bed.
“What? No!” I said. “Why would you think that?”
“Every single article of clothing you own is laid out on our bed,” he replied. “So I have to assume you are either leaving me or you have joined the armed services and if that’s the case, I really don’t think you’ll have any need for your daisy cardigan or your checkered capris.”
I looked over the vast array of clothing that was spread out across the room and I was impressed that he even noticed that I had all my clothing laid out on my bed. But I was even more impressed that he knew what capris were.
“I am not leaving you or joining the Navy Seals or bugging out because of an impending zombie apocalypse,” I assured him. “I’m simply packing.”
“For what? A three-year mission to mars?”
I gave him a snarly look and said, “NO, wise guy, for our vacation next week.”
And that is where I lost him. I saw his eyes glaze over and the blank look invade his face and I knew his mind had moved onto something more understandable like quantum physics.
To be fair, no one on the planet packs like do. Take someone who is OCD, happens to love clothes, and throw in a very small carry-on suitcase and you will have me: the manic pre-packer.
The urge to start packing for summer vacation usually hits sometime between St. Patrick’s Day and the annual Running of the Bulls. One day, I’m perfectly fine, and the next, I start scouting weather reports and pulling out clothes for every possible weather condition including a lava explosion (although we have no plans to visit a volcano) or being stranded on a giant iceberg after it breaks away from its Antarctic shelf (also not planning to visit any polar regions, but who knows, that’s what they said about the Titantic, too).
Then there’s the question of appropriate footwear for a variety of walking conditions including cobblestone streets, melting asphalt and the occasional primordial trail soup. Clearly it’s easy to see that one must be prepared for nearly every possible weather, dressy, casual, muddy, sunny, humid condition and fitting all that in a small carry-on suitcase had the definite possibility of giving me a stroke.
“Honey, this is crazy. You know ultimately you’re going to forget something, so just let all this go and pack the night before like I do,” he said willfully.
I harrumphed him and started my second thinning of the piles while he went down to watch something more interesting, like golf.
Finally I was all packed and feeling confident that I had done the best packing job anyone has ever done, ever, except maybe the people on the International Space Station.
As we unpacked our bags in our charming hotel, my husband stopped and looked around. Then he turned his suitcase upside down. Nothing fell out.
“Problem?” I asked.
“Yeah, kinda. I think I forgot to pack my underwear.”
“Oh, that’s too bad. But I think I know where it is,” I responded perkily.
“Yes. It’s in the top drawer of your dresser,” I replied.
“You know you’re crazy,” he said petulantly.
“Yes,” I said. “But at least I have my underwear.”
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