For the entirety of our marriage, 25+ years now, when Tim and I have travelled we have employed the zippy bag method of toiletry packing. That is to say that we each use a varying number and size of zip top plastic bags to bring along our toothbrushes, shampoos and so forth that we find necessary for proper grooming while on the road.
I must also add that for many of those years, I managed, every single time we took a trip, to forget one essential item. A different item each time, I'd like to point out, but still, every vacation involved one trip to a Walgreens, Walmart, CVS or other store to find a suitable substitute. Eventually, thank goodness, I got my act together on that score. Whew!
The zippy bags worked for many reasons. They are see-through so it was easy immediately to find whatever it was that was needed. We always have them on hand in the kitchen pantry so there was never last minute rush to the store to buy zippy bags just prior to packing. AND if they got yucky during the course of either the vacation or trip home, it was easy enough to toss the old one and replace it.
But it never looked very nice. The contents of the bags were always strewn all over whatever hotel bathroom we were using. They do not fit neatly into a suitcase. And worst of all is the whole non-biodegradable plastic useage. I at least try to be a good citizen.
Therefore, for a long time I have kind of had my eye out for a decent looking, tidy and most importantly, functional toiletry travel bag that was neither too big nor too small. To be perfectly honest here, I never found one.
But Tim did. You see, he travels for work. And he tries to keep his packing down to one carry on bag plus his backpack. So efficiency is absolutely Key. If he is going to be gone for a week, which is not unusual, and especially on a business related trip, there is a level of expectation on how a person is attired. He has to have enough room for clothes AND toiletries. He was fed up with wrestling zippy bags into his carry on suitcase and always having those perma-wrinkles in his dress slacks from the wierdly shaped and sized bottles of this'n'that to say nothing of the ever present concern of having bottle of mouthwash or hand lotion springing a leak all over his clothes in an improperly sealed zippy bag!
So finally, he recently found these great toiletry travel cases. They unfold to reveal all sorts of wonderful little compartments. And the best part, there is a hook at the top so it can just hang up in the hotel bathroom instead of having things here, there and everywhere cluttering up the place. Then when it's time to go back home, it is a simple matter of folding it back up, zipping an actual zipper closed and right back into the suitcase it goes!
I wish I had been clever enough to put something next to the photo of the case so you could see the relative size. Ratz. Ok, I just measured it. The closed case is 7 inches long and 5 inches tall. Awesome!
We each have one now and I have filled mine up. I'm ready to go. No, seriously. I'm ready. I have my cute little toiletry travel case filled and I'm raring to go. Let's roll! Somewhere. Anywhere. I don't care. I wanna test drive this thing!
Amusing side story. Many years ago now, I was the Co-Director (the actual title was Co-Chair but nobody ever knows what that means) at an assistance organization called, The Parker Task Force. It was then and still is an amazing organization that lends a helping hand to folks who are in need and assists in getting them back on their feet and on the road to success. It was staffed entirely by volunteers and was largely dependent on donations. One day we had some very sweet high school girls volunteering their time and energy to help us out. And that particular day we had a ton of donated toiletries to sort through. We tasked the girls with packing those things up which entailed putting shampoos, soaps, toothpastes and so forth in boxes, sealing, labeling and dating them and then stacking the boxes in a store room.
The girls chatted and giggled as they worked but they worked steadily and we loved hearing their excited chatter in the next room as they laboured. Once the boxes were all filled and sealed, several of the girls then came to us and asked us how to label the boxes. My friend and co-worker, Jan responded, "Just write toiletries on the boxes, you don't need to itemize the contents". The girl kind of blinked at us, "What?" So Jan repeated her instructions and then she and I moved on to our next task. The girls looked at each other and shrugged then walked out of the room. We thought nothing of it.
Later on, we noticed in the store room, neatly packed and stacked boxes very carefully labeled with black marker in large block letters
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Jan and I laughed about that for the rest of the day. Awesome!
Maybe that made you at least smile a little bit too. I hope so. Regardless, have a wonderful weekend! I bet that makes you smile even bigger!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.