The Necessities for Travel (as a Femme)

Who would have thought 5 yrs ago, with my bright blue hair, chopped off just an inch from my scalp and my newly decreed no-make-up face and shapeless tanks and t-shirts with jeans that I would transform from what an old friend termed a “diesel dyke” appearance to two years later, an all black wearing goth barista to now, a cutely coiffed, white and pink shirt with khaki pants wearing professional social worker.

Starting around the time I was 16 and taking trips w/ my mom to New Jersey/NYC every year, I decided that a smart girl in the city didn’t carry a purse. I started out with chain wallets and never wearing anything without pockets. Now my daily wear doesn’t include pockets, and I’ve had to adjust. Plus, even though some women’s pants are made with pockets, I assure you, they don’t mean for you to use them. So here I am, buying a wallet that’s too big for my pants pocket. And then a purse to contain that wallet. But then I’m traveling far, so I need a purse large enough to carry what I need. And then I’m spending $300 on a Coach bag. But it’s the perfect bag, in lavender and white and OH so cute.

And now I’m planning a few weekends out of town. One coming up in Chicago, and then one a month from now in LA. This means I need to upgrade my usual carry on, which is this ridiculously bulky Timberland backpack that got me through 2 yrs of grad school and then some. It’s not exactly made for a laptop, but it’s kind of worked for awhile. After looking over the OH so cute options at REI yesterday, my husband and I conferred and realized that a less cute, but dramatically handy TimBuk2 bag in coral. And then a small cute lavender bag.

I am taken aback by my need to accessorize in not only a utilitarian, but fashionable way. This costs money, because of course you want quality and usefulness, not to mention something you want to be seen with. That can be pricey, but in the end it’s cheaper than buying something you hate for cheap, and later by something that you kinda hate less, and then going back and getting exactly what you wanted/needed in the first place.

With my new accessories, I can only hope that my friends in Chicago will recognize me, bright happy pink femme and all.