Friday, July 13, 2007

"HONEY, ARE WE PACKED YET?"

I am a very nervous flier. Actually, unless there is a lot of...OK, OK...unless there is ANY turbulence, I do alright once we are in the air, and the pilot has turned off the fasten seat belt sign. The first four minutes are what get me. Every time.

As a result of this, I am a procrastinator packer. I
never pack anything more than one day before a trip. (Being honest here, it's necessary to say that I am this way even if it is a driving trip.) We went on a trip last summer with several other couples, and I was still shopping at 9:00 p.m. for a dress to wear while renewing our wedding vows! (Of course, we're women, so all of us were trying to coordinate our outfits for the vow renewal with a mixture of white and brown. The six couple ceremony is a story for another time.)

Part of it is that I'm scatterbrained most ~ if not
all ~ of the time. I think it might have ADD, but that's a whole other subject! I also have a hard time saying "no" ~ whether the request is to be on some committee at school, to teach at church, or to just go have some fun with friends. I like having the ability to be flexible, so I am easily distracted.

Another part of being a procrastinator packer is due to the fact that I tend to work well under pressure. I feel more organized because the one task becomes so large that I cannot let myself be distracted by other things. If I do things too far ahead of time, I end up worrying that I have left something out or unfinished.

When it's a airplane trip, though, the biggest part of it is that I start thinking about that first four minutes of flight the moment the suitcase comes out of the closet! It's not a fun feeling. I can happily anticipate a trip, setting aside the flying part, if I'm not having to pack for it.
Packing makes it real. So...my little method actually works well for me. By the time I finally do pack, it's so important to get it done that I go into a one-track mode. I have to be so focused on the actual job that other things don't distract me as easily.

It drives Mr. Brownstone crazy.

He starts asking the week of the trip if I have started packing. I used to tell him "no", but now I just smile and say, "We'll be ready." Everyday he asks the same question. "Are we all packed? I'd really like for the bags to be by the door before we go to bed the night before we leave." I just smile and say, "We'll be ready."
(I love it how he uses the term "we" as if we were all participating in the act of packing. I also find it humorous that he actually still thinks with each trip that I will be sleeping that night.) Then once came my favorite question of all time,

"Are you packing clothes, or will we be sightseeing naked?"

The funny thing is that he was
really asking. He really asked this! So dramatic! He gets that way sometimes. I just smiled and said, "Of course." He smiled back in a panicky sort of way ~ you know half laugh, half fear, slight eyebrow raise, and then back-to-business. "Will we be packed? Will the bags be by the door the night before we leave?" I always smile and say, "We'll be ready." I never answer "yes" because I learned long ago that Mr. Brownstone never puts the bags in the car the night before we leave.

I won't lie. I am
STILL nervous about flying. It's the middle of the night. We are leaving for the airport in four and a half hours, and I will not sleep at all tonight. I will finish packing, do whatever laundry is left to do, clean things like the baseboards and the ceiling fan blades, get myself ready (because of course I haven't showered yet today - I've been too busy keeping myself busy), and then as promised, I will smile in triumph as I place all the bags by the front door for Mr. Brownstone.

13 comments:

Nicole said...

OMG. Everything but the fear of flying could be about me. It's actually kind of funny to hear someone else describe this phenomenon. I mean, even down to the "I think I might be ADD." (And the husband part too!) Wow. I feel for ya!

Connie said...

That's funny!

My hubby is the one that packs an hour before and I am the one packing a week ahead.

He is on a trip right now and forgot to pack undershirts....he said his moobs were sweating during his presentation and he *wished* he had packed the night before instead of 3am!

Reluctant Housewife said...

I hate that first few minutes of flying too... basically the whole take-off thing. Terrifying. And I'm a last minutes packer as well.

Fun post!

Colleen said...

Oh, I feel ya on the "first four minutes" thing! I say hail marys back to back until that light dings off!

Debbie said...

Sightseeing naked. I kinda like the idea. It would be like a "give as much as you get" thing.

texasholly said...

So funny. I am a packing procrastinator for ONLY me. Everyone else in the house I have packed and ready ahead of time. Me, not so much.

So glad you didn't have to renew your vows naked!

Thanks for linking!

Elaine A. said...

My husband is the reluctant packer but I am the one that has trouble with that first four minutes. I am usually praying the entire time...

I love how your husband is always asking if you will be packed. Doesn't he know by now!? ; )

Valarie said...

Oh my gosh you just described my house right before we go on a trip. Actually we are leaving Saturday to go somewhere and I haven't even thought about packing anything. :)

Eudae-mamia said...

I'm so there with you! I thought I was the only one to count to 200before I take a breath. There is no better sound on the planet than that "ding!"

My prescription for relaxed flying = 2 Dramamine washed down with a gin and tonic. Or is that 1 Dramamine washed down with 2 gin and tonics. Either way, you aren't going to care.

Hence why I have yet to fly with my children. I would have left one of them at a lay over by now.

Em

dddiva said...

LOL I am a packing procrastinator myself- even when it comes to moving. Not because I dread any part of it, just because it is what I do and I would make myself nuts if I got it all done I'd have too much time to worry that something is not perfect or could be done better. Funny, I always had someone whether a spouse or kid asking if I was sure it would all be ready. HA like there are no stores or something if I forget.
When we went to Disney the little Diva's were the ones needing to borrow stuff from me and they packed way early.

jubilee said...

Packing doesn't bother me half as much as unpacking. Ugh! And it's the last four minutes of the flight that gets me. The first four are exciting, the last for are nail biters!

Good N Crazy said...

I vote for the nakes sightseeing! HI-larious!

jill jill bo bill said...

I am the dreaded list maker and have my bag packed DAYS before I go. But I did forget my panties once. They were in the dryer.