Two Worlds Colliding

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Part of the fun of traveling is the unexpected detour a journey takes.  No matter how well I may think I have planned my itinerary, something always comes up.  Which makes packing light a bit challenging. After all, I need to have appropriate footwear for the impromptu hikes, random boat rides (for some reason I find myself on a boat on just about every trip I’ve taken), and evenings on the town on top of the business meetings if it’s a work-and-play trip. Tack on clothes, bags, and other accessories for all kinds of climates and I’m already close to my luggage weight limit before I even pick up a single souvenir.  

On a long trip, I check in one large and one smallish suitcase.  And by smallish I mean a chubby medium. I just can’t bear to confess that I’m not that light of a packer. My carry-on is a rolling computer case that’s roomy enough for my laptop, purse and necessities.  This or the medium suitcase is particularly useful in case of spontaneous short trips in between that involve trains or commuter planes.  I love the notion of trains but there’s nothing worse than maneuvering a big suitcase across the platform then on the train during rush hour.  Or cramming it into a tiny cabin on an overnight train; luxurious and roomy are two words most commonly lost in translation:

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Did I mention that I whimpered in my bunk cot that night while hugging my purse the whole time?  I’m usually resilient but that night was not a proud moment.  I’m not good with sharing sleeping quarters with strangers eyeing my bags, but I digress.

As much as the fashionista princess in me revels in the luxury world of shopping and couture, the wanderer in me more often practices less comfortable, off-road traveling.   Yank me out of my element (aka the designer salon at Bergdorf), let me bring at least one luxury item, then put me in the middle of the desert with nothing but blind faith in a Berber shepherd and you might find my two worlds colliding:

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I know, the blue Merzouga headwrap did nothing for the Gucci bag or Prada jacket in that look above.  It just seemed right at the time to match my guide…and then not so much once I got home and downloaded the pictures.  I will admit this whole look is a fashion disaster but after some dusty days in the desert, my purse was the only link to my other life back in LA.  Who was going to cite me for a fashion infraction out here anyway?

But truth be told, I was exactly in my element having tajine under the stars that night, even with no prospect of a warm shower (did I already mention I HAVE to shower every night before going to sleep?).   A little bit of rum passed to me from a stranger’s flask helped ease the fear of scorpions and spiders lurking in the sand around us. OK fine, I whimpered that night in my tent as well.

Getting out of my comfort zone is that unexpected detour I mentioned at the beginning of this entry.  Can’t wait to see what happens on this next trip.  I promise to do better in the fashion department though, now that I’m supposedly blogging about travel and fashion.


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