real life

When your partner is a packing freak

I received an email from a reader last week that I could totally relate to. Anyone else have a man in their life who insists they pack light? This is tough.

And so, to Group Therapy. Time to give and receive wisdom within the Mamamia community.

Simone writes….

I have a question I’d like to ask the class.

We are lucky enough to be going on a family trip to Europe in late September. That’s me, my husband and our two boys aged 12 and 6. We will be gone for close to one month and are travelling to the UK, Italy and France. Our kids have never been out of Australia and are very excited. My husband has a conference to go to in Cannes so we have arranged this trip around his business trip.
I’m sure it will be amazing but last night my husband announced that he can’t stand dragging huge amounts of luggage around and hates waiting for suitcases with other impatient travellers all hustling for space around the baggage collection areas………we are (apparently!) taking one overnight bag each.
Now this news has given me a mild heart attack. I don’t think I can do it. Don’t my clothes deserve a holiday too? Is this even possible? I can’t imagine leaving for a month without at least four pairs of shoes (trainers, Birkenstocks, one ‘party’ pair and another gorgeous day wear pair – at least!).
And then my mind really went wild. What if it’s cold in the UK? We’ll need jackets. What if we go to a fabulous party in Cannes? That’s a whole special frock with matching shoes and handbag. What about toiletries and all the technology/chargers/power converter crappola you have to take? Not to mention book, camera, hat, bathers.

And then there’s the stuff I wouldn’t go away for a weekend without. Jeans, tops, t-shirts, trackie pants, wrap thingy, cool dress….

I reckon I can pack light for my boys. They wouldn’t care if they wore the same thing every day. But I don’t plan to spend every night of our holiday washing socks and jocks for the next day! I want to ask the lovely and very clever MamaMias if they ever travel very light and if so, what do they take and what do they leave? I need help!

Oh Simone, Simone, Simone. Could you be secretly married to my husband BECAUSE HE HAS THE SAME APPROACH TO PACKING. One that I do not share. A couple of years ago, we went overseas for 2 months with two children and he insisted HE AND I SHARE ONE SUITCASE. The children shared another. FOR TWO MONTHS.

And after I picked the pieces of my mind up from the floor and stopped crying and began to get my head around the idea, I have to say I really dug it. There is something so liberating about having fewer clothes. I always forget that I lose my vanity (and fashion mojo) when on holidays and am perfectly content to wear the same thing every day. I even wrote a post about that which you should read here.

My advice is to suck it up. You will be OK, you will. But I won’t pretend it’s not hard and yes, it does leach the fun out of going to nice places a wee bit when you have to wear the same pair of pants to the beach and out to dinner although it does teach you to be creative. Look! I can wear my pants as a necklace! Look! This t-shirt can double as a mini skirt. And so on…

Anyone else got some good packing stories?