This issue includes a story about Rountree's Luggage — a topic that caught my attention because I never owned a piece of luggage until I moved here and bought it at Rountree's. Up until then, I just threw my stuff in the back seat of my car.
People say that you learn by what you see growing up. My family didn't have luggage lying around. We just never went anywhere that would require us to pack something that didn't fit into a brown paper bag. The first time I was introduced to the concept of luggage was when I saw a game show on TV. If the contestant got the answer right, she would win a seven-piece Samsonite luggage set with the matching carry-on case. What would anyone do with seven pieces of luggage? I had a hard enough time grasping the idea that Tupperware came in seven sizes, too.
When my wife, Elisa, and I were planning our wedding, she kept asking me how many bags she should pack for our honeymoon. I answered that two cardboard boxes would do the trick. That was the first time she went off crying to her mother. Was it something I said?
Whenever I needed to transport something from one place to another, a shopping bag usually would do, and I didn't need seven of them to make the trip. I neatly folded everything I thought I would need into the bag and I was set to go. Today my trips revolve around having the right amount of color-coordinated suitcases, each with its own purpose. We have a piece of luggage for just for pants, and one just for shirts. Of course, we have a separate bag for shoes and this bag can only carry my wife's shoes. You never want to mix my one pair in with her 15 pairs. To complete this travel scenario, Elisa has another carrying case just for her makeup and another one for her toiletries. That man Samsonite is a genius: You do need seven pieces of luggage if you are married to my wife.
My wife enjoys telling everyone that I don't pack for myself. Let the truth be told: I can never find a spare piece of luggage to put anything of mine in. She has dibs on all seven pieces.
If I were lucky enough to get on one of those game shows, think I would win a piece of luggage? Nope. I would be the one who gets the seven-piece Tupperware set with the burpable tops.