I'm obsessive about packing, I like to be ready to go a few days in advance of any trip. That way I have time to re-pack. So, I'm already completely packed for my potential one month long Houston surgery trip, other than my toothbrush and a few other minor things like that.
At first, I packed everything into a standard black rolling suitcase that I dutifully dragged out of the closet, but something just didn't seem right. I consulted my karmic advisor (my daughter), and she agreed that such a trip required the use of--nay, the companionship of.... my old blue backpack.
Old Blue is a simple soft shell backpack that I bought when I was in college. It was my constant--and sometimes only--companion on many adventures. Egypt, Spain, Mexico, Haiti, and countless trips around the U.S., including back and forth between my hometown in Minnesota and wherever I happened to be living at the time. Camping, vacations, archaeological digs, business trips, you name it, Old Blue never let me down. A few loosened seams have been sewn tight, and I put a "Key West" patch over a hole, but other than that it has been a true warhorse. I have a collection of other patches from other trips that I have never gotten around to sewing on to it, but he doesn't need to show off all his medals, he knows what he's accomplished.
So it seemed fitting, given the significance of this trip, that I un-retire my old friend. It'll be me and Old Blue, off again on another adventure. Just like the old days! And it's good karma!