Barry Evans
Barry Evans

By the time you read this, we will have returned from a trip to the Big Apple.  The funny thing is that we lived in New Jersey for about 10 years and almost never went into New York.  Now we are on our way, as I write this, as part of one of our wedding anniversaries.  (I have often pondered why they are called anniversaries whereas birthdays are anniversaries of a birth date, but are just called birthdays.  Why aren’t the marriage celebrations called wedding days?)  Certainly something to ponder – on a slow day at least.

Even though heading to New York may appear to be an exciting and wonderful thing to do to celebrate a wedding day, there is a downside.  The downside is that you have to pack a suitcase – well in our house at least two suitcases if you are exceeding two days – and not more than seven.  The Blonde in the house is a firm believer in being prepared for every eventually that might befall us when we are headed on a vacation.  In this case summers in New York can be very hot, but we are talking about the “North” here so it could get cold.

Not only can it get cold, but it might also rain.  Thus, there are many eventualities for which one must be prepared.  As you may imagine, this has been a topic of discussion during our years together, but despite that we are still celebrating another wedding day.  My personal philosophy has always been to throw some clothes in a small suitcase and head out.  Her philosophy is more or less directly opposite.  As a result while we do have a small suitcase, it sits most forlornly in the closet where the neglected stuff is stored.        

I recall one time when we lived in Pensacola we were headed to Pittsburgh, and a friend came by to take us to the airport. The sainted portion of our marriage had packed a big suitcase with so much material that it took my friend and I to lift it. I am normally a man of much patience, but I was a little ticked off and our friend was not certain that we would have very many more wedding days to celebrate.  This overload was eventually solved peacefully as the first thing I did once we got on the open road was to stop at an outlet luggage store.  A redistribution of clothes etc. to a new suitcase meant that each could be lifted for our return journey.

It did not start out that way in our marriage.  I recall leaving Pittsburgh for our honeymoon in the Poconos with a small amount of luggage.  The only thing that added weight was that somebody had laid their hands on the suitcase and filled it with rice. There was quite a bit of rice that fell out, and I am certain that the motel owner in Donegal, Pa. was not pleased and hoped that we did not stay there on our way back.  Actually he did not need to worry as we did not have enough money to stay there on our way back.

I think that this time we will make the weight limits the airlines have set.  One reason is that I was able to sneak out the sheepskin jacket The Blonde had put in my suitcase.

Barry Evans writes about Life in The Villages for