Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Traveler's Ultimate Dilemma

I honestly don’t feel that I have traveled a lot in my lifetime. I love to go to new places and experience new things. Even though I have not traveled a lot, I have been to a few noteworthy places (and some less noteworthy locations).

  • Baltimore, Maryland: ’92 Olympic Trials spectator - Gymnastics
  • England & Scotland: Cross Cultural Trip in 2002
  • Washington DC: Twice - once as an eighth grader and once for work
  • New York, New York: To visit the Financial District for my Bachelor’s degree
  • Chicago, Illinois: On a whim with an ex
  • Orlando, Florida: Visiting with friends though I didn’t go to Disney
  • Lakeland, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Jacksonville, Orange Park, and Naples all in Florida: To visit friends
  • The Bahamas: On a cruise
  • Atlanta, Georgia: To visit my niece
  • El Paso, Texas: To visit my ex at Fort Bliss before he deployed
  • Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana: On a road trip
  • Different cities in Ohio and Indiana: I count these on a smaller scale because it’s still the tri-state area
  • Niagra Falls: I’m not sure which side, however, because I was so little (probably 3 or 4)

All this to say that, soon, I will be embarking on another excursion and the same quandary still occurs as with most all of these other trips: The Bag. The non-touristy, hip, chic, carry-all bag that doesn’t hurt my shoulder to carry around for hours yet serves my multitude of purposes bag. The traveler’s ultimate dilemma.

Over the years, I have employed several different bags, but most of them were to just get the job done. And most of the bags I have purchased were cheap. I mean, the reality of the situation is that I am a frugal individual and have always been on a pretty tight budget.

After trekking through all terrains in England and Scotland for a couple of weeks, my shoulders were so sore and tired. Even after a short shopping spree, my shoulder and back are generally sore and achy from my purse alone. So I really would like to find a versatile bag with multi-functionality.

But where to begin?

Well, lucky for me my friend Shannon had already conducted a search of her own with a plethora of suggestions from her readers (which outnumber my readers by far). So I perused her archives and found a suggestion by one of her readers that I fell in love with, the MEC Right Hand Pod Sling Pack. I figure this will be a good bag for those days where we go shopping. It can hold my identification items, money, camera, and a hoodie just in case. And, since I was there, I ordered the MEC Flux Sling Pack as well for trips to the beach and my carry-on. I may not need both for this trip, but I think they will both be useful in the long run. A sound investment, I say.

Friday, February 12, 2010

My birthday and The Snot Factory

My birthday was last week. Wednesday, February 3rd, I turned 31.

I don’t expect much from my birthday’s anymore. To go through the day and have someone acknowledge it is more than I could ask for. I received a number of emails and phone calls wishing me happy birthday and I love that. My Friend pulled together a nice birthday basket for me full of treats that I love.

My office peeps decorated my desk which is always hilarious.

Otherwise, my birthday was pretty tame because, well, I was sick. Very sick.

The Snot Factory decided to open shop on me. I visited one of my best girlfriends on Saturday. She thinks her son might have been the carrier of the little bug. Sunday, I felt very sluggish and really tired. Just not quite myself, but really thought I was just tired. I didn’t have a clue as to what was in store. By Monday, I felt like a big pile of dog doody. I left work early and stayed home Tuesday. Wednesday, I forced myself out of bed, still feeling like crap, and headed out to work. I felt a bit of obligation to go as I knew my officemates would have a delightful treat for my birthday celebration and they did. Finally, Thursday evening, I felt a bit of a break in the crud. By Saturday night, though, I was feeling pretty yucky again. Here it is, another week later, and I am still blowing my nose and I sound congested even though I feel much better in comparison to the last two weeks.

I hope this is the end of the Snot Factory. I know a number of folks have had the crud turn into bronchitis and I don’t need that. For the next 5-6 weeks, I am steering clear of everyone and becoming an extreme germaphobe. I wouldn’t want to ruin my next Great Vacation!