• Kellie Hicks

How to Pack

I love to travel, but I don’t like to do without out so I take a lot of stuff with me. It’s never been an issue before because most of our traveling is in our own car or by cruising. I don’t do too much planning for what to bring. I typically wait until the night before or – gasp -the morning of and throw anything I think I will need or hope to have into my suitcase without considering how much luggage I have; how heavy it is or how I will manage various pieces of luggage. I know of some of the packing smart guidelines, but I’ve never taken them seriously – until now.


On a transatlantic cruise, you have to think differently. The cruise will take 14 deliriously restful, floaty days. Once we arrive in Europe, we will do some sightseeing for 5 days, then flying on to other countries, for two more weeks. Obviously, when we debark the ship, we will lose our mode of transportation so we will switch to planes, trains, busses and automobiles, taxies and whatever is necessary to get where we want to go. I don’t want to be a burden to my husband, so I’m determined to manage my own luggage. That is my medium suitcase.


I’ve decided to take one medium size check bag. Some would say, that is two much, but we will be gone 5 weeks - two of which will be on an elegant cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s Wonder of the Seas, and I need some different kinds of stuff. I once went to a Rick Steves talk in Tampa. He presented a picture of himself on his most recent travel. He was wearing kaki chinos a polo shirt with collar and had a back pack slung over his shoulder. The backpack was his “luggage”. He stated you should not travel with more than what you can get into a carry on that will fit under the seat in front of you. The woman next to me, whom I did not know, and I looked at each other and said no – with emphasis.

Today I packed my midsize suitcase for the third time. I used a combination of laying cloths flat and rolling them. Some of the items I rolled were too big, so I just laid them flat.


I have cloths on one side and shoes, toiletries, a big hat an umbrella on the other side. I know I have too many shoes, but my feet always hurt, so I will switch shoes as needed to keep my tootsies as comfortable as can be so I can stay on my feet longer. Perhaps, I’ll climb the steps in the Leaning tower of Pisa.


Here’s my suitcase. It’s packed two full days ahead of our early morning ride to the cruise terminal. I’m hoping you will not judge me too harshly. I’ll let you know how I did.


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