Today's episode of the Great American House Purge of 2012 focuses on bags.
Tote bags. Hand bags. Dog bags. Overnight bags. Duffel bags. Little bags. Big bags. Laundry bags. Mesh bags. Fabric bags. Leather bags. Shoulder bags. Cross-body bags. Sling back bags. Cute little "go to a wedding bags." Big practical "go to work" bags. Bags that were borderline luggage. Article bags. Exhibitors' bags from national specialties. More dog bags. And did I mention, dog bags?
You get the picture.
OMFG. And I am not using those words lightly.
Someone should have staged an intervention years ago.
My name is Melinda and I am addicted to bags.
I've known this for years and have pretty much come out of the closet when it comes to my love for bags. That's because there's no room for me in my closet. It's full of bags.
A girl can never have too many bags, you know. Having just the right bag can make or break a trip. Training is guaranteed to be more fun and your dogs will Q more often if you have just the right gear bag. Everyone knows that. I know I'm not alone. There are more of you out there just like me. Sisters, unite!
So today I sat down with all my bags. I reminisced. I laughed. I cried. Okay, I didn't cry. I thought what the hell . . . seriously . . . what the hell. How did this happen? This is like the woman who wakes up one morning and realizes she's living with 64 cats. How did it get to this point?
I drug all my bags out to the dining room. First, I made sure the Farmer was far, far away. Like on another farm. In another township. We've been married 21 years this summer but there are still some things he doesn't need to know. I'm pretty sure he's fairly oblivious to my bag addiction although he will occasionally narrow his eyes and say, "Is that a new bag?"
Hmmm . . . maybe. Oh look! The cows are out!
Today, I downsized. I made piles: a pile to keep, a pile for Goodwill, a pile for my obedience club's spring garage sale, a pile to take to work and try to sell to unsuspecting co-workers.
I'm horrible about buying bags for dog training gear. This is totally my weakest point. Over the years, I've bought and abandoned an alarming number of dog bags. Many were returned, re-sold or re-purposed. Each bag had a favorite feature. Unfortunately, all these favorite features were distributed among a number of different bags. I keep waiting for a manufacturer to combine all these features into one product. Hasn't happened yet. I'll keep shopping. You can't stop me.
Apparently I have spent the last 40-odd years of my life buying every bag that caught my eye. I have bags for every possible packing contingency. And that's the ironic thing - I don't travel that much any more.
Maybe 10 years ago, the dogs and I were on the road a lot, going to agility trials in Missouri, Illinois, Minnesota and Nebraska. Now local clubs are offering more and more three-day trials and nearly all are day-trip drives. I still do a few occasional overnights but not like the old days. It's awesome to come home and sleep in my own bed at night, but my bags were collecting dust.
The house purge is nearing its end. Sorting through all my bags was one of the final tasks. As much as I hate trying to figure out what to keep and what to downsize, I love the feeling of freedom that comes from hauling box after box to Goodwill or loading up storage totes for the spring garage sale.
And with all that new-found space, there's room for more bags. Seriously. I can stop any time I want to. But I don't want to.