At our old house, there were two thrift stores within a 15 minute walk; now the closest thrift store is ten miles away. I’ve mentioned that we very rarely go thrifting anymore, which has been helpful in my mission to purge the house of clutter. These days, I only go to the thrift stores if there is something we really need. I went a couple days ago, on a mission to find a small set of shelves to put by our back door. We take our shoes off when we come in the house, and they end up in a big heap by the door. I was looking for shelves that would fit into the small corner by the door and give us a neat place to put shoes.
There’s a Goodwill right next to my favorite grocery store, so I combined the two trips. Within a few minutes in the Goodwill, I found a perfect set of shelves. They are homemade, solid, and heavy, made of real wood. Exactly what I was looking for, and for the bargain price of five bucks. Since I found the shelves so quickly, I decided to browse around a bit. I soon stumbled upon a great carry-on bag. It was solid and well-made, with a retractable handle and wheels to roll it along miles of concourse. It had tons of interior and exterior pockets, and was just a handsome bag overall. I wanted it. Up until a short time ago, I’d have bought it, simply because I wanted it.
But my new clutter-purging self decided to pass on the bag, for lots of reasons. I already have a great backpack that works just fine as a carry-on. It also works for hikes and day trips, which can’t really be said for the wheel-about carry-on. I’m trying to eliminate uni-tasking objects from my life as much as possible, and a purpose-made carry-on bag isn’t really good for much else besides air travel. If I were a frequent flier, I might have made a different decision. But the last time I flew anywhere was in 2007. We have a toddler now, and flying doesn’t sound so appealing anymore. In fact, traveling in any form doesn’t really seem like as much fun as just hanging out at home with my husband and son. In addition, my understanding of how my actions impact the planet has increased dramatically over the last several years, and these days the idea of flying just conjures up images of greenhouse gasses rather than exotic destinations.
So I put the bag back on the shelf for someone else to find, and left the store with the small set of shelves. The corner by our back door is now neat and tidy, and I don’t have to find room in the basement for a bag that might come out of storage once every couple years.
All is good.