Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The New Suitcase

I have to admit, living in a black and white world is much easier, but a world of gray is much more interesting.

This week's gray purchase was a new suitcase. Now I know many of you might be wondering why I didn't purchase a used suitcase. It seems like such a simple thing to find on Craigslist.

And it is. A search on Craigslist for a suitcase turned up 78 results. But hang on a second. Look at these prices! $65, $60, $100! And none of them were really exactly what I wanted. Some were too big, some were too small, some were located miles and miles away. Some of them claimed to be "vintage" by which they meant "without wheels."

Okay look. Generally speaking, I am perfectly happy to pay more for quality. But suitcases are an exception to the rule. Why on Earth would I pay $100 for something that is going to be battered around by airline crews? I once owned a nice suitcase, and a few years later it resembled a squashed fruit. If squashed fruit looked like suitcases with broken zippers. Never again!

Instead, my mom, who has been my life-saver in town for the weekend, went to Santee Alley in Downtown LA. Santee Alley is home to cheap clothes, knock off purses, and ridiculously cheap luggage. She bought mine for $30.

So there you have it. One new suitcase. Is it Samsonite? Heck no! Will it do just as good a job of storing my stuff until an airline crew rips it to shreds? I think so.

If I had needed a suitcase in the last year, I would have sucked it up and bought an expensive used one. Or maybe I would have gone to Goodwill and bought a cheap used one that looked like it was already battered to shreds. But now living in the gray? I just couldn't justify the extra expense, not to mention the inconvenience of driving all the way out to someone's home in Santa Monica to pick up a suitcase.

Am I justifying my new suitcase? Maybe a little. This gray thing isn't easy. But overall I think it was the right decision.

Now I just have to pack.

12 comments:

Joyce said...

The key thing is that you are thinking before you buy. Lots of people don't do that.

Beany said...

I guess people in L.A. don't leave perfectly nice, almost new suitcases on the curb?

Well I tried to justify all my expenses for our bike trip so I'll let you justify yours.

But you did think about the purchase before mindlessly dropping money on it - isn't that one of the many big lessons from your year long experiment anyway?

Green Bean said...

You should live next door! My next door neighbors just put one at on the curb for trash pick up. Happy packing.

jennconspiracy said...

I have a (now) 10 year old Samonsonite suitcase - 18" rolling "suiter" - best money I ever spent on a suitcase. Something happened and it was repaired under warranty (I can't even remember).

The suitcase has been across floors, terrazo, pavement, asphalt, dirt and gravel. It has even carried (successfully and without incident) a full set of Royal China Blue Willow (in the overhead compartment). It doesn't have a lot of wear despite all the stress it has been through. Its' a very reliable suitcase.

I hope your knockoff lasts as long!

ruchi aka arduous said...

Joyce, thanks! I am thinking before I buy. Sometimes over-thinking. ;)

Beany, well I haven't seen any though I admit I haven't been wandering the streets looking for almost new suitcases.

GB, yet another reason for me to move next door to you!!

Jenn, that's awesome! You have had much better luck with your Samsonite than I have. Although my big issues were with the larger suitcases, the ones that end up being checked. My carry ons usually last longer since I handle them better than the baggage handlers. :)

Abbie said...

I got a brand new set of hunter green suitcases at my wedding shower. On our honeymoon, the first time we used them, somewhere between here and the Bahamas, somebody spilled a bottle of bleach all over one of them, so it looks kind of like a green tie-dye. Now it's easy to find...

ruchi aka arduous said...

That actually sounds pretty cool!!

Melissa said...

yeah, I think you made the right call - we unfortunately go through a lot of suitcases in our household. My husband travels a lot for work, and you're right, those baggage handlers just don't give them the respect they deserve! Now here's hoping that it doesn't get lost...

Bobbi said...

Gray is my favorite color for clothing!

ruchi aka arduous said...

Melissa, sheesh, I didn't even think about the bags getting lost!!

Bobbi, heh, I like gray clothing too.

jennconspiracy said...

My Samsonite 21" suiter has been checked and carried on -- it even had cash hidden in it by an exboyfriend which I found over a year later (wanna tell you what kind of heart flutter you get when you feel a lump, unzip the suitcase lining and find a few hundred dollars in twenties like "what else is hidden in my suitcase?" before you remember that clever boyfriend hid it there on your last trip together?)

jennconspiracy said...

I just realized I don't exactly know what size my suiter is, but it fits in overhead compartments. 18"? 21"? 26"?