I’m just a girl, standing in front of a very full closet, wondering what to pack for India.
And every part of me is screaming – travel light, travel light. Because travelling is easy with just a carry-on. You land, fling the small bag over your shoulder and make your way out the terminal into the Himalayas. Or wherever you’re going.
Looking super stylish of course, without hanging around the baggage carousel, no tripping and no hurting your back.
So I’m thinking the blue carry-on. With three dresses, a skirt, black t’s, shorts for hiking, a crisp collared shirt which wont be so crisp after a while, and a pair of jeans. Except that it’s going to be hot.
Very hot. Like 40 degrees hot.
There’s that gorgeous camisole that I really want to wear although it may be a little skimpy, it would be tragic to leave my new white dress behind, and also I have that floral sundress which is perfect.
Pack light, be practical, the voice is screaming.
But another one is whispering – Practical? Take the cami. And the dress. Take the gorgeous shoes that go with it. And that skirt. Because what if?
What if I go somewhere smart one night and want that little black dress? What if one day I feel like waltzing around Kashmir in a sundress. What if…
No-one waltzes around Kashmir in sundresses, Violet, no-one. And little black dresses? Nah.
Okay then, what if I meet a man in Dharamsala? A yogi. What then. I might want a really pretty frock.
Yogis don’t care so much about pretty frocks, Violet.
True. Also, I’m travelling with a girlfriend and we’ve already made a pact. No men. At least not in our shared room and anyway, No Men. It’s a girl’s holiday and we’re going to explore and have fun and hike and do girl stuff and yoga and meditate, shop and maybe visit a temple or two.
So pack light.
And I need a pair of hiking boots, my Birkenstocks, one pair of light closed shoes, a hat because boiling, two because I’m always losing my hats, maybe a swimming costume, and ooh, I also have that blue dress, the one with the collar, the sexy one, I think I have to take it.
Hang on. What’s this?
Someone just handed me Joan Didion’s ideal packing list.
It’s perfect. Perfect.
I’m taking everything out my bag, hanging it all up and starting again.
I’m going to follow her list.
Of course I already have the bourbon.
I just need to buy a typewriter.
N.B. I better not forget my toothbrush!