13 September 2006


Today, the sun shines. Windows open. Cats dash, pausing to sniff the breezes. Today calls out for strolls and smiles. I, meanwhile, am a frazzled mess.

Tomorrow I leave for a business trip to Portland, ME. Preparing for trips, even though I have traveled out of state at least once a month for the last 8 years, leaves me flustered. I have two of most toiletries that usually stay in my suitcase, a system for my in-flight amusement, and I still manage to leave thinking I've forgotten something. Even after going through the mental checklist several times: Pajamas, workshop clothes, relaxing clothes, toiletries, underwear, socks, jewelry, hair clips, make-up, stuff to do. (In fact, I'm sure I've forgotten something off that list.)

Do I have enough clean clothes, or must laundry be done? (Don't ask about putting the laundry away.) The kitchen counter generally wins the staring contest and I load the dishwasher. (After I put the clean dishes away. Very important step there.) What snacks do I need to pack? When did I run out of almonds? Can vitamins go on planes now? Do the cats have enough food? Oh, @#$%, I have plants! They need water, right?

This state of frenzy causes all thinking to short circuit. I have to remember the steps to calm down just to recall what I need to tackle next. Some individuals write down their tasks and shopping needs into lists (on paper, no less). I chant them into my memory. On a good day, I include my fingers so I can count the number of items in the basket to see if they match the number of things I need. Today is not one of those days.

So, I leave you to dart off to Target for floss, cleansing cloths and Kleenex. Floss, cleansing cloths, Kleenex. . . .

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