I ran over my little toe with a full luggage cart. The cart was running away from me towards the busy street and I slowed it with my shoe at the expense of a very angry toe. That was over a week ago. Ever since then I’ve been dreaming of donuts. Last night I was in a big homeless shelter/visitors center where hundreds of delicious donuts had been donated. Because it was a dream I was, as usual, anxious, not being homeless or a tourist, I was not sure I was entitled to but still craved a donut. I don’t buy donuts in Alaska. When around Boston I am compelled to as there is nothing more Bostonian than to be seen with a Dunkin Donuts bag. Anyone can wear a Red Sox hat, but the true Bostonian buys a donut at the airport to rekindle the accent and the attitude.
I am in love with luggage carts. The ones we use at The Captain Cook Hotel are brass and can carry about 15 bags max. I feel like I am in another century when I roll down the tile floors and out to the motor coach. Like library carts, they have a preferred direction of motion which I have just figured out in my second summer here. If you have ever tipped a full library cart or a luggage cart in an elevator, you know of which I speak. Do not F* with the preferred direction! For those of you using one for the first time, make sure the wheel with the support at 45 degrees is in the front!
To accommodate my angry toe, I ate some chocolate and bought new shoes. They are incredibly boat-like and comfortable, basically Birkenstocks but not quite as hippy. They were not in my salary range as a summer worker but I figure that I will wear them when I get another job as a therapist, God willing. It is a dork’s shoe and I am a big dork. I work moving luggage and getting people from one place to another. I would have been a good shepherd. I am not particularly religious like the lady who turned her key in the other day. She said she could not stay in a room numbered “666”. I wonder what she thinks people do in the other hotel room beds?
I love working with people but forgive me if I posit that luggage is a mirror of the soul. So many people are afraid of identity theft that they are not putting any kind of identification save maybe a ribbon on their luggage. Here’s a hint: It will not follow you without a name. Maybe it will follow in your general direction as I am aware that you are amongst a group going to a certain hotel. But it will not be in your room. It will be sitting somewhere where someone can look up your identity!
Just tell us your name. If your name is John Smith, I feel your pain. Your luggage will always go to someone else. Sorry. Just carry it with you. Same with Jose Garcia and Jung Lee. Even if you have a zebra striped bag you are doomed because although you recognize it as yours, we don’t if it doesn’t have a name on it. What kind of person doesn’t put their name on their luggage? A person without faith in humanity? A person with so much anxiety that they believe their luggage must go under cover? A person so narcissistic that they believe their luggage is special? A person who doesn’t think ahead to realize we might be more inclined to open it up than other luggage in order to find out whose it is? Really, most of you have more stuff in your bag than owned in total by people in other countries. Consider your luggage a potential gift to a stranger or an opportunity to purchase new, better clothing. Get the travel insurance if you need to but put your name on the bags!
Some people write their name in big fluorescent letters across the top. I like that. Some have funny tags which read, ” This luggage belongs to the guy standing behind you!” I would prefer a tag reading, “Choose again, no booze in here.” or “All clothes contained within are not necessarily clean nor odor free.” Here is my favorite one:
Let’s talk about those fancy hard shelled bags. Do you think a hard boiled egg is going to look much better than a cooked one when handled roughly? Not really. The only other rule I have for luggage is “Don’t put your baby in the bag.” If your computer is your baby, or your wedding ring or your bottle of champagne, CARRY IT ON! In reality a cardboard box would work just as well and be recyclable. All luggage breaks down eventually. The little handles are quite spindly. The wheels are not really industrial, you could not skate on them. The heavier you pack, the harder it is going to land on a truck. When you freak out about luggage that has not arrived, we empathize. It has happened to every person who has ever travelled to Alaska, myself included. Your crying will not get it here faster because as humans that makes us nervous and then we make more mistakes! Go have a drink with someone who carried their booze on with them and let us sort it out logically.
I am a little jealous of pretty luggage. Some bags look like a tardis. Yesterday I saw two matching pink leather bags with rhinestones. I could choose someone to date by their luggage. Ideally it would be very small with a funny tag on it and of course their name. Perhaps it would also have a Dunkin Donuts sticker.