Packing Too Much Crap

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Today, I ventured to the infamous Lavalle. It’s a street — or more like a pedestrian’s haven — in Buenos Aires where the worry of maniacal motorists is replaced with an occasional bumping of shoulders. This walkway is lined with shops, pancho (hotdog) stands and buskers throughout the day, creating an energy of harmonic chaos.

My main purpose for visiting the street was to pick up, yet another, suitcase as I organize my plan of attack to pack. I remember arriving in Buenos Aires with a large rolling-suitcase, a large backpack as a carry-on, and a smaller backpack as my “personal item.” I even left a few items with a friend who drove me to the airport. Nevertheless, I felt like I had traveled with too much.

Now, after nearly six-months of living through Spring, Summer and now Autumn, I realized that I have accumulated a lot of stuff: Clothes, towels, books, coffee-makers, kitchenware, knick-knacks, etc. The list seems endless. Obviously, I have had to cut the ties between me and a few items, although I know I will always remember them. I have to pick and choose my favorite children (my books), and find a good orphanage for the rest (Walrus Books in San Telmo).

Then, I stumbled upon this article on Vagabondish about Matt Madeiro’s own battle with having things, even if it took him getting robbed to reach his realization. Standing in a sea of his over-turned stuff, Madeiro had a “holy hell, I have a lot of crap” (his words, not mine) moment. Despite having his personal space violated, he began to question what these things even meant. He uses the seasoned-traveler as an example to illustrate how the human being can survive, if not better themselves, yet have so little.

As I look around my room, at my piles of crap separated into three groups, — checked-bag, carry-on, leave behinds — I feel like I should rethink what it all means. All of it.

By Brit Weaver


About the Author

Toronto born and based, Brit is an avid leisure cyclist, coffee drinker and under-a-tree park-ist. She often finds herself meandering foreign cities looking for street eats to nibble, trees to climb, a patch of grass to sit on, or a small bookstore to sift through. You can find her musing life on her personal blog,

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