It doesn’t matter where I’m going or for how long; it doesn’t matter how organised I am, or how many lists I make; it doesn’t matter how many times I check and double check – something always gets left behind.
Going to New Zealand I forgot my little alarm; my Canadian holiday was a double whammy because as well as the toothbrush that had to be bought at Manchester airport, a pink cotton cardigan was left somewhere in Vancouver – behind the door in the Hostel, I think – and its loss not discovered till I unpacked at home; and I managed to leave my photocopied poems on the living room table the summer I went to Finland.
But it isn’t just the long-distance holidays, or even a holiday at all. I left my railcard behind when I was going to Carlisle one day – and since it wasn’t my friend Sue on duty, I had to pay full fare.
I think part of the problem is my inability to travel light. If I’m going across the road to the doctor’s I’ll take a book; a train journey to Carlisle necessitates a book, my netbook and possibly my mp3 player; while Holy Week in Wolverhampton usually requires a large suitcase, a book bag, another bag with my travelling rations and possibly a backpack.
This last holiday on Anglesey wasn’t too bad except for the day when I left my walking pole and binoculars in the B & B – it was a good job we were returning there that night. Oh yes, on another day I put the pole down by the coastguard station on Rhoscolyn Head and someone had to chase after me with it.
I gave up writing shopping lists years ago. Every one would be left behind in the kitchen or on the livingroom table. I’ve even tried putting a letter rack three inches from the front door and hanging a bag below it so that items I must take with me don’t get forgotten. It doesn’t work.
No matter how hard I try something always gets left behind.