This weekend has been SOOOO incredibly busy for me! Between celebrating my dad’s birthday AND preparing for Italy I barely had a moment of free time! My weekend started with numerous calls regarding credit cards for study abroad, reservations for study abroad, phones for study abroad… you get the picture. For my dad’s birthday, my family headed up to NY Jets Training Camp in upstate New York. I am not particularly fond of sports and I have never been to a football game before, but the scrimmage was actually pretty cool! On Sunday, I started my day seeing The Wolverine with my dad which was awesome! Then, after all that fun, it was back to worrying about tickets, packing lists and numerous other things for study abroad.
As hectic as preparing for abroad has been, there have been a few perks. For instance, one of the many lists I have made so far lists all the requirements that my purse must have to be deemed appropriate for Italy. With all that I have heard about pickpockets cutting into people’s purses or stealing their purse right off their shoulder I am not about to take any chances! Looking at my purses I realized I had absolutely nothing that met all of my requirements. We all know what that means: Time for a NEW PURSE!!!!
In the bit of free time that I had I headed off to T.J. Maxx (for the third time) to find the perfect purse: it had to have a short handle just big enough to fit on my shoulder (this would allow me to pin down my bag with my arm and prevent it from being snatched), an optional shoulder strap so I could also wear it as a crossbody bag (this is also a safe style of purse abroad), a full zipper closure and a sturdy bottom that can’t be easily cut into. Most importantly, I wanted the purse to be BIG. I do not travel light by any means and my plane restrictions say my purse can weigh up to 17 pounds. I definitely plan on getting my 17 pounds worth 😀
I went through what must have been hundreds of purses before I finally I found this black Steve Madden satchel (similar here and here):
I absolutely love this bag! Not only does it fit all of my requirements, but it is stylish with its zipper detailing, chevron print lining and quilted back. Also, since it is black, it will match with everything. And best of all? It was only $39.99 (orig. $98.00)! That is why I love T.J. Maxx. It was totally worth all my trips there to find this bag. You can look forward to seeing it in all my outfit posts from Italy!
I am going to end this post with a tip for those going abroad: even if you do think the bottom of your purse is sturdy enough to prevent pickpockets from cutting into it, take extra precaution by lining the bottom with a piece of cardboard. That will give you some added protection and keep you from constantly worrying while walking the busy streets of larger cities like Rome, Paris and London.
Hope you found that helpful! Feel free to comment about any questions you may have about packing for travel. I will be making a post soon about all of my tips, but before I do that I actually have to finish deciding what to pack 😉