Being indecisive does not allow me to have just one handbag, plus whether I am going to the gym, work, on an adventure, or running errands compels me to choose one bag over another.
健身房包 Gym bag
Sometimes this bag doubles as my work one, and I add my work apron, hat, sharpies, and water tumbler to the mix. The Sephora freebie tote borrowed from my mom includes:
- a luggage lock disguising itself as a gym one
- iphone workout armband to listen to Spotify while sweating it out, and browse new exercise routines on my Instagram feed
- toasted almonds in Snapware to stave off hunger
- the blue toiletry bad houses lip balm, hand moisturizer, toner and ladies’ needs
- the gym’s group class schedule even though in ten months I attended two Zumba classes
Pacsafe bags, a company from down under, all feature pouches that lock, making it an ideal bag for travel. I used this birthday gift I received from my parents several years ago on all my trips in and around China. It is equipped with a sleeve for a laptop, and good nooks and crannies to hide valuables, locking them up for safekeeping. Depending on the trip taken, I may carry some or all of the following:
- ZJ’s DSLR camera I am trying to learn the ins and outs of using properly
- Sunscreen especially if we go hiking, picnicking, or even to a park for an hour or two
- Macbook Pro as this bag occasionally accompanies me to work where I Skype, blog, job hunt, or a combination of the three before or after a shift
- the white drawstring bag hold sharpies, lip balm, spare pens, and L’Occitane hand creme samples my mother gives me
- Moleskine journal purchased from a German friend (they cost more in the States) topped with the first fountain pen I own, thanks to my in-laws who bought ZJ and I our own before we departed Xi’an. ZJ, my eldest brother and sister-in-law were floored by my giddiness in picking out this gift, particularly when I told them I had never used one before. It’s amazing what is seen as nonessential in one place deemed essential in another.
钱包／手提包 👜 Purse
I switch between this envelope-inspired satchel, bought by ZJ from 怡丰城 Vevo City in Xi’an, and a magenta glossy Coach shoulder bag I fought a Chinese woman for many years ago at the Coach outlet located in Woodbury Commons, an hour from home in New York:
- Coach keychain wallet has car keys to our 2000 Ford Focus, library card, and a pre-wedding photo
- Secondhand iPhone my father bequeathed me
- Moleskine daily planner I use for to-do lists
- Sharpie, the ultimate writing instrument
- Trident gum
- Fay-bans from the Muslim Quarter in Xi’an
- Tissues serving as remnants of Xi’an days when supermarket purchases included paper products. Tissues are multi-functional items as most public restrooms are bring your own toilet paper facilities (BYOTP).
- Burt’s Bees lip balm
- 钱包 👛 Vera Bradley wallet
读者，该你们了…I turn it over to you, readers: What’s in your handbag? Xiananigans welcomes snapshots for this one!