I got a call from Maureen this morning after I had posted my recent blog entry. She and I chatted for a while and got caught up on all the happenings in her world. Thank the Lord, all are well in her family.
Maureen had asked me how long it takes me to pack for the road. I told her 30 minutes. What is there to pack for when there will be no fine dining, excursions to the theater, a night at the opera or art museum. So no dress up items get packed. They have hung in the closet for so long they have gathered dust.
The only things I pack for are dirt, sweat, grease, mud, and the occasional three year old temper tantrum that I throw from time to time.
In the heat of the summer I don’t wear makeup because the sweat turns me into a raccoon and my eyes sting and burn. I don’t use hairspray either for the same reason.
Living out of a suitcase for the last 11 years – yes even while I’m home I sort of live like in a hotel. Except my clothes are neatly folded and stacked on the dryer instead of being put away. Bad habit I’ve gotten into.
Just to see how long it does, in fact, take me to pack I set the timer on my cell phone.
Starting the timer
Two suitcases to pack. One is already mostly packed with Joe’s clothes since he recently came home. I just need to add extra clothes for each of us. A couple sets of outer wear and lots of under garments in one.
I wear scrubs when I work. Keep the dirt and grease on those clothes then I don’t soil my street clothes and they can be worn an extra day. I’ve got Joe doing the same thing so he doesn’t ruin his clothes.
2 suitcases to pack
Sorting and making piles of the clothing I will take that has been tucked away since last fall when we changed from shorts to long pants.
Sorting out the shorts for the warm days
Now for the stuff that STAYS packed all the time. My “truck bag”. This bag holds all of my spare batteries for the radios Joe and I use to keep in contact with each other. I have a container of window cleaning wipes in there, and other items I use to display my legals in the window of the trucks I drive. This stuff remains in this bag and does not come out.
My "truck bag"
My “day book” and “saddle bag” that Joe likes to call it. This is my office while on the road. Log books to keep track of the time we drive and all rest stops we take. Have to keep the DOT happy. I also have a monthly calendar to keep track of all the hotels we stay in for our tax *groan* information. I also keep track of where we pick up and where we deliver. At the end of the year that calendar is tucked in the bin along with all the other tax documents. Paperwork YUCK. I’m not even going to talk about that right now.
My "Day Book"
Next is my “Face Bag” which doesn’t hold much for my face in there. Comb, deodorant, toothpaste, tooth brush, sun screen, antacids, and the most important part of the whole thing….my traveling First Aid Kit. Band-Aids, ointments, creams, disinfectants, and other assorted items because Joe loves to come to me bleeding from some place on his body. Mainly his big toes.
My "Face Bag"
My two “Office” bags together. One has my laptop and the other has my day book and other things.
My "Office" bags
My “Legals” for the different companies we drive for. I have to keep them with me at all times – whether home or on the road they have to stay with me. And of course, my GPS that is instrumental in keeping me going in the right direction since I am totally “directionally challenged”.
My "legals" and GPS
Now, in my opinion, this is the most important bag I make sure to take with me at all times. My “Coffee Bag”. HAVE to take this along. Nothing better than fresh perked coffee first thing in the morning.
My "Coffee Bag"
Our hotel shoes were getting quite scruffy since the last time I was out with Joe. Time to put these in the trash and get some new ones from the plastic bin below. That’s done. The two plastic bins have been sorted and are replenished with brown envelopes and checked for necessary extra quantities of bath soap, Q-tips, shampoo, and other personal hygiene products.
Toss the dirty hotel slippers and get some new ones
Since most everything has been left in the bags, cases, and bins the suitcases were the only things I had to really check through and pack.
Total time in getting this task finished. 35 minutes. I told Maureen 30, so technically I lied. Sorry Maureen 😦
Hey, its easy to do when you don’t put anything away 😉
I’ve got laundry soap and fabric softener sheets in the back of the pickup, extra scrubs in other bins, spare work gloves, light and heavy jackets since we never know what the temperatures will be when we arrive.
Life out of a suitcase. Good and bad of it all is right here in my home.
Okay, starting tomorrow my next posts will be on my “Foolishness and Mayhem” blog. The adventures begin.