My flight is actually tomorrow night but because I am a psychopath who hates to fly I have started packing tonight, as if somehow this will allow me to get the jump on the aeroplane.
I guess trying to figure out how I can take as many clothes as possible in a tiny suitcase to avoid checking in my luggage is part of the problem. It is an exercise in 3-D and while, like Liam Neeson, I have a range of many and specific talents, they do not extend to building a TARDIS out of a suitcase, or for that matter breaking Paris while saving a kidnapped daughter.
For those that want to play along, here is the problem. I leave at 11 pm, a time when I am normally fast asleep and fly through the night to get to the other side of the country just as the sun comes up. As the other side of the country is three hours ahead, though, this actually means that even if I manage to fall asleep as we are taxing for take-off and open my eyes just as the funny tube thing connects to the door, I will still only be enjoying about four hours’ sleep.
I arrive at 6 am and then have six hours to kill before my meeting, which has been bizarrely scheduled at half past twelve but do not have a hotel to check into until after the meeting. In the six hours I have spare I need to travel by train to a place just north of the meeting to catch up with my nephew, my defacto sister-in-law and maybe my brother for coffee and then track a couple of stations back to the meeting.
So I somehow need to be able to get on the plane in an outfit that will be comfortable enough to sleep in, but will also allow me to roam public areas of NSW without fear of arrest. Oh how I wish I had indulged my secret desire for a one-sie when they were all the rage.
At 12.30 pm I have to present myself for a formal meeting which will go on until at least five, during which I need to be able to meet members of a board without looking like Catweezel or falling asleep at the table. After this, a trip up to the motel (which looks from the pictures like the sort of place where they check the car park to find bodies in a parked car) during which time I can dump the suitcase, but not before I take something from it that has been packed for nearly 24 hours, but which emerges, crease free so I can go to dinner with the team.
I am hoping that the dinner is short – beans on toast or something so I can get more than five hours’ sleep before the meeting continues the next day and through until early afternoon. That is a second business type outfit. Then I have to board another plane that evening to fly home.
The weather in Sydney is, by all accounts as diabolically undecided as it has been over here, so I will need to bring something in case it rains, but also be prepared for warmer weather during the day.
I am taking check-in luggage only so I do not have to drag a massive bag across and around several suburbs of Sydney. The word here is agile, like a travelling panther. Somehow, I doubt I shall reach the dizzying heights of panther unless in respect of the colour of the circles beneath my eyes of the state of my breath.
Maybe the answer is layers. Just wear pretty much everything I intend to use and peel off the outfits one at a time as I go: jeans, work pants and tracksuits on the bottom and casual top, work shirt and sweatshirt on top. With all that layering, I might even be able to go commando and save on underwear.
Right I am going in. Wish me luck and if you have any helpful suggestions, don’t bother, I shall probably be experimenting to see if I can get away with a jumper as head wear and won’t be able to hear you.