2 May 2015
It was a given in the Army that you travelled with only what you could carry in your own two hands. As a businessman BH travelled light; he’d learned the hard way.
There was a well-worn routine: pack the case the night before, not forgetting smart shoes with trees, in stripy cotton bags; heaps of socks, pants and shirts; suit and spare trousers; shaving kit; and pyjamas (with a note from me tucked into them so it fell out when he went to bed). Minimum of fuss: passport, ticket, money. He did his own briefcase and then disappeared in a puff of exhaust smoke.
On Sunday I’m going on a two-nights-away trip, and if you could see the stuff I’m taking, you would think it was to the Pole. Stuff I absolutely cannot do without, e.g. a pouch of remedies for real and imagined maladies: sore throat, cough, and every kind of skin and tummy disorder (Well, forewarned, etc.).
Enough clothes for all weather conditions, plus shoes. Nightwear, day-wear, rain-wear and Paddington hat.
There’s more: 50 books on my Kindle, diaries, notebooks, and 4 pens in case they run out. An umbrella, TWO sticks (canes) in case one gets left on the ‘plane. Things to eat. In all the palaver it’s very likely passport, tickets, money will be forgotten.
Oh, and a special outfit for the following occasion: I’m going to represent BH at a celebratory “Do” in Lithuania, and will stay in my very favourite European city, Vilnius (see my article here). Free time will be short; but there are old friends to see, particular cafes to revisit and of course – shopping.
Sadly, my Lithuanian is non-existent. I’m ashamed of this and it’s too late to start learning now, but I can manage:
“Labas, kaip sekasi? (Hello, how are you?)
“Aciu, gerai.” (Thanks, fine.)
If your Sanskrit is up to snuff that helps, apparently.
Sudie! Au revoir!