Thursday, 9 February 2006

A weighty problem

Dakota's post about handbags and a link from 43 folders (yesterday) to a Washington Times article about the amount of stuff modern man/woman carries around got me thinking. I just turned out my backpack (Hedgren Urban Bags, dark brown, somewhat the worse for wear), here are the contents:
- Belgian ID card (it's obligatory to carry this at all times - I've often wondered where one is supposed to put it when swimming!)
- British passport, which I needed for my holiday booking for Libya (yay!)
- bus pass, in a holder tied to a loop on the bag so I don't lose it (again....)
- mobile phone
- purse/wallet
- digital camera (more usually in jacket pocket)
- folding hairbrush
- packet of tissues
- small tube of handcream
- small tupperware container containing non-caffeinated teabags (Rooibos, green tea)
- 1 "reading book" (The Devil's Feather by Minette Walters, lent by M)
- Turkish verb book in case I get stuck somewhere without anything to do...
- The Bulletin, English-language weekly magazine about Belgium
- Zone 02, free French-language weekly about Brussels
- 2 holiday brochures
- envelope containing print-out of internet booking for an exhibition in London next month
- notebook for writing down any good ideas that happen to strike me
- 3 felt-tip pens, 2 ballpoints, 2 pencils and an eraser
- "Euromillions" lottery ticket bought on 27 January with La Carioca, for a laugh - but it seems that none of the winners live in Belgium!
- bank card, supermarket card and healthfood store card (I don't keep cards in my purse any more!)
Mind you, this is nothing compared to the loads local schoolchildren carry. I often see them bent double under backpacks almost as big as they are, or struggling to lift their satchel-trolleys up onto the bus!
I suppose we just have too much stuff. What burdens are YOU carrying?


At 10/2/06 08:23, Blogger Mridula said...

Mine are pretty light, but I do have this habit of carying the digital camera around!

Can you please tell me what does Qaminante mean?

At 10/2/06 09:46, Blogger qaminante said...

It's a whimsical spelling of "caminante", which is Spanish for traveller or wanderer, see

At 10/2/06 09:49, Blogger qaminante said...

At 11/2/06 04:41, Blogger boo said...

oooh. i did this @ another blog but contents of my bag has changed abit.

1. ventolin inhaler
2. $
3. cell phone
4. digicam
5. gum
6. pen (1 purple, 1 black)
7. note/scrap book
8. chapstick
9. hairbrush
10. ID
11. passport
12. drivers licence
13. pic of my parents
14. 8-ball
15. psp
16. umbrella
17. water
18. handcream
19. sanitizing handgel
20. drinking straws

At 11/2/06 14:03, Blogger qaminante said...

Hey boo, you must have a bootiful big bag too! What would we do without our toys?

At 11/2/06 17:37, Blogger Dakota said...

Mine is quite empty right now, but let’s see what’s usually in there:

Filofax organiser with a pen
Extra pen
Cell phone
Lip balm
Hand lotion
Business cards from others
Book, I’m reading
Batteries (I don’t know why)
Paracetamol, Ibuprofen
Nail file
Fisherman’s Friend mini’s or gum

At 11/2/06 19:18, Blogger Peggy Payne said...

I carry a picnic basket as well as my pocketbook, for trips to my office and back. It's my briefcase. I like it because it allows manuscripts to lie flat and not get bent up.

Of course, I also have room for clothes to go to the cleaners and clips of movie reviews, etc.

I get them at thrift shops, and wear one out about every year and a half.

Because I carry this big closed basket and wrote a novel called Sister India, one of my neighbors calls me the Cobra Lady. I trust that's why he calls me that. He seems like a nice guy.

At 11/2/06 20:45, Blogger qaminante said...

Dakota, I wonder whether you do what I do and carry around batteries for days intending to drop them off at one of the places that collects them.. Sometimes I put them aside and then can't remember whether they are old or new.
Peggy, perhaps you should carry a flute as well! I checked to see whether I read your novel (I have to list books I read as I don't keep many) and I did, almost 4 years ago, though I don't remember much beyond a very vivid Varanasi setting. Look forward to your next one!

At 12/2/06 16:19, Blogger bibliobibuli said...

my handbag is huge and generally a disaster zone ... always contains a book or two and a couple of notebooks (one for interviews and articles and meetings, the other for more creative jottings) ... fibre tipped pens ... handphone (which you'd no doubt term a "mobile"!) generally switched off ... a couple of lipsticks that have seen better days ... no mirror comb or hairbrush (I tell my hairdresser to give me the messed up look becasue it's the only style i can keep tidy) ... a bright green leather purse which still contains british coins as well as malaysian money ... and a whole mess of scrappy bits of paper, receipts, loose tissues, yesterday's serviettes, tampons ... disaster!

At 12/2/06 18:51, Blogger Green said...

I have a sketch book and some paint material, little journal, a little tyranol bottle(headache medicine), Japanese-English Electronic Dictionary, a log of chocolate, a few Japanese Bunko-bon(tiny book), and of course a little Canon digital camera and i-pod in the colorful African basket. Too heavy to carry...

At 12/2/06 20:23, Blogger qaminante said...

Hi Biblio, actually where I live a mobile/cellphone is called a GSM but I didn't think anyone would understand that! German friends call it a handyphone. Whatever they call them, everyone seems to be carrying one around with them, and I must say I would be lost without mine now even though it is mostly switched off.
Greensleeves, how do you manage to carry chocolate around with you without eating it?! It wouldn't last 5 minutes in my bag.

At 13/2/06 01:19, Blogger Green said...

Which means I have a spare chcolate all the time.


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