Saturday, 7 March 2015

Packing And Purging

I got up late this morning. Of course I got up late this morning; it's my last morning of lazing in bed doing nothing for the next 6 weeks. Hotels want you out by 11:00 AM, mostly. That means I have to get up at around 10:00 AM for the next six weeks; get up, get dressed, go! I think my blog will become an evening event for the next six weeks. Given the nature of my mornings, I doubt there will be a lot of time for writing. We'll have to see. I have it planned for writing, but planning and delivery are two completely different things.

It's packing time today. My buddy Dion came over for a bit; we had a couple of beers after which he hauled out my suitcases for me. Travel packing for me, particularly on a road trip, is somewhat more complex than you might think. Certainly there is the whole clothing thing; we all need that stuff. Then there are the mechanical aids I will need along the way; the M-rail off my bed, a transfer shower bench, an extra pillow for my wheelchair, a small step-ladder for Katherine, who knows what else by tomorrow. My last minute packing will be the laptops, my tablet, the GPS, and most importantly, my medications. Oh, and don't forget the camera bag.

This whole packing process is enlightening for me in more than one way. I've been looking at my closet lately, thinking about what I should pack. I've come to realize that I have a lot of clothes I will never wear again. Life in the wheelchair has changed my body shape; my belly is bigger, my shoulders remain wide while my arms get skinny, my neck is still as thick as ever, matching my skull I suppose. So shirts that once fit are now tight; pants that once were baggy are now too small; suits that once suited me no longer suit. I should just get rid of all of this stuff and start over.

I've done that a couple of times in the last couple of years, purging my closet of stuff that no longer fit. As my body has changed, so have my clothing requirements. These days my wardrobe almost completely consists of blue jeans and casual shirts, long sleeves for winter and short sleeves for summer. I don't even need socks; I wear compression socks all the time now. The only real constant has been boxer shorts; some of those have been with me for a while and they show it.

I'm taking a lot of stuff with me on the trip. After all, we are driving from winter to summer, north to south. We are likely to experience everything from snow storms to stifling humidity and heat. I've go the clothes to cover it all, assuming they fit. That's when the packing and purging meet, when what once fit, fits no longer. I won't buy much though; I won't need it for all that long.

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