Monday, March 13, 2006

Need purse advice? Turn to the Internet!

I'm going on a business trip on Wednesday (let's call it Excursion Around Northern Ontario, Part the Third: The Northwest Redux - I'm looking forward to it, as long as it doesn't snow), and need serious help. About other things besides the obvious!

I don't know which purse to take.

Here are the candidates, with a brief description and pros and cons of each.

Purse #1: The Everyday Purse

Purse 1

This is the purse I use on a daily basis. It's big enough to hold my wallet, camera, cellphone, iPod, in addition to at least one paperback or a small knitting project (like, say, a sock). I got it a few years ago in a funky little shop in Port Dalhousie.

Pros: It screams "I'm unique! I'm an individual! I have funky, eclectic tastes in shoulderbags!" Plus, it holds lots of stuff.

Cons: What it doesn't exactly scream is "I'm a professional!" And it's fraying and a little worn in spots.

Purse #2: The Boring Purse

Purse 2

This one is more professional. The strap comes off and I can carry it around like a handbag. It's brown leather and it looks nice. It doesn't hold much, but it has pockets for what it does.

Pros: Screams "I'm a professional!" Is a good purse for polite society and going out. Like I mentioned, converts from a shoulderbag to a handbag.

Cons: There isn't a lot of room in it, and tends to get heavy fast. Also, it's bulky and sticks out and gets caught on things. I don't usually take the strap off because I'm afraid I'm going to put it down and forget it somewhere, which is bad, moreso on this upcoming trip because of the distances I'll be traveling.

Purse #3: The Smaller Shoulderbag

Purse 3

It's small and neat, and I use it all the time in the summer. As well, I know at least four other people with this exact same model (Hi Julie! Hi Thistle! Hi third person who I've forgotten who you are but I apologize for doing so! Hi Robin!).

Pros: Small and portable, which is good if I'm already going to be lugging around a briefcase and a suitcase. Will hold the absolute essentials, which is good if I'm going out for dinner or something.

Cons: Somewhere, my sisters are looking at it and having the same reaction - "It's a summer purse! You can't use it in the winter!" Which probably means I need a smaller winter purse. And have you noticed that word I keep using to describe it - small? Yeah. Its size is a liability (what with the putting down and forgetting of things.)

Purse #4: The Big Bertha

Purse 4

This is the one I used on previous trips because it was big and doubled as a briefcase. Hell, it's big enough to fit my laptop in. I can fit everything from purse #1, plus a hardcover book, maps, and snacks in it.

Pros: Like I said, big. Roomy, even. I can't lose it or forget it somewhere. If I go souvenir shopping, I can pop everything in here until I can get to my suitcase. Or I can put important stuff in here and save room in the briefcase. Did I mention the size?

Cons: I'm already bringing a big briefcase for my laptop (it has wheels!) - why do I need a second laptop-carrying option? Plus, the size means small stuff tends to get lost in the bottom, if I put my wallet in the pouch on the inside, it keeps collapsing, the iPod fits in the cellphone pocket, which means the cellphone usually ends up lost at the bottom, and the more room I'm allowed, the more I find stuff to put in it.

Which one do you think I should use? I think I know which one I'll end up using, but I won't say anything until you've had a chance for input. It's too late to buy a new one, but is there anything I should look for in my next purchase?