Post by C.M.
How to pack for a weekend city break? When it comes to first world problems this is a big one. Very big, particularly if you’re travelling with a certain budget airline with very little room for cabin baggage.
I have recently had cause to leave the country (to Venice, in case you didn’t know, because I haven’t been going on and on about it at all), and the usual panic set in as to what to bring. Thunderstorms were forecast so waterproof items were required. I was hoping that there would be some sun too, so that had to be factored in. What if I fell into a canal? Aside from a tetanus shot and maybe the kiss of life from a gondolier, obviously multiple changes of clothes, and a hairdryer, would be required. But having picked up a tiny suitcase from Argos (€19!) it was to be a challenge to fit everything I badly and absolutely needed in.
In the end I abandoned the bulky hair products in favour of hairgrips and a hat. A pair of heels was squeezed in along with two pairs of sandals and I wore some pinchy flats, so plasters and blister pads were probably the handiest things I brought. 3 dresses, 2 pairs of trousers, a few tops were tightly rolled. Tights of course. A space was left for the little shoulder bag I had to fit in during the flight, and its contents of sunglasses, seeing glasses, wallet, passport etc, and another one for the plastic bag full of toiletries and make-up. Oh, and a towel! Always carry a towel.
So you may already have concluded that even in my tiny case I piled in way too much stuff. Next time I will pack half that amount – 2 pairs of pants and 4 tops can prepare you for a fancy eventuality. A couple of light dresses for choice. One pair of sandals will suffice. Yes, a raincoat will be useful, and a light jacket as well if possible. In the end it really is about comfort so abandon your visions of swanning around looking like you stepped out of a magazine (or a music video), if your feet are killing you and your nice new summer dress is squeezing the life out of you the image you’re after won’t exactly be portrayed.
TM got it right in her jeans, black go-with-everything-jacket, scarf that could double or even triple its function, some layering tops and sensible yet stylish booties. Look at her whistling her happy tune! Oh, and that suitcase beside her? Perfect for the flight, and with enough room left inside for souvenirs. Or a hair-straightener. Whichever is higher on your list of priorities…