What’s in My Bag? A Ten Year Retrospective

Meditating Wind no.

As I hit the big 4-0, I got to thinking about how my life had changed since the slightly less big 3-0.

I could approach this geographically. Ten years ago, the extent of my adult international experience was limited to a couple skirmishes over the border into Canada. Since then, I’ve lived on an island at one end of the Eurasian landmass and moved to another island on the other end.

I’ve also visited a dozen other countries in between. Miraculously, even with all that flying, I still haven’t used up the carbon karma that I’ve accumulated. (I’ve planted a LOT of trees in my time.) At least according to my calculations.

I could also catalog the physical changes of my body (from Olympian to a bad back), recount my reverse midlife crisis (bohemian performing artist to academic), regale you with my wardrobe evolution (tank tops and hiking boots to neckties and dress shoes), muse over my transportation choices (mountain bike to car to subway back to bicycle), or even list my gastronomic inclinations (organic bulk whole grains to convenience store rice balls).

But really the best way to encapsulate the labyrinthine trek from 30 to 40 is to list all the baggage I carried around with me through the years. And I mean this literally.

What was in my bag over the last decade? And what’s in my bag now? Continue reading