Excess Baggage

Airports. Personally, I love them. So much people watching to do, so little time. Where is everyone going? Who are they meeting? What have they got in their humongous carry-on bags? I think airports are very romantic places too and I like to think of lone travellers bumping into their soulmates around the baggage carousel; couples in long distance relationships running and jumping into one another's arms in the arrivals hall.....In reality, airports equal stress. Most of us go with our loved ones and are half way to Splitsville even before we've set foot on the plane. All that queueing despite the advent of online check-in (which now means the queue for the bag drop is monumental and the check-in desk is empty); travelling with children who insist on pushing the luggage trolley (let's be honest, NO ONE can control those things); the security surrounding what you can and cannot carry in your hand luggage. This always, and I mean always, appears to come as a shock to my father-in-law.

"Do you have anything sharp in your bag?" I enquire at security.

"Of course not, love," my husband's dad quips.


"Well, only a mini hacksaw and a giant needle," he replies as if this is completely normal. Apparently one never knows when one might need to hack something up and stitch it back together again.

My favourite part of the airport experience is airport shopping. I don't actually think it counts if you make your purchases "airside". I always feel very compelled to buy new lipstick and mascara and I hit the jackpot on a recent trip as I discovered Dior It-Lash coloured mascara. The purple one is fab and actually quite subtle. I like the pink one too but if you don't remove all trace of it before going to bed you look like you've had a particulary heavy night on the tequila the following morning. As for lipstick, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine is my fave; Secret is a great nude shade with a lovely sheen.

I also love to go into Accessorize and pick out an entire head-to-toe beach outfit including beach-to-bar options. I always seem to fail to remember that I have in fact already packed about five beach outfits in my actual suitcase but out of sight, out of mind as far as my luggage is concerned.

So just as I promised myself this time would be different, this time I wouldn't have twenty kilos of hand luggage, I find myself struggling onto the plane with more weight than a bag of bricks. If only I could exercise some self-control or chop my bag in two so I can palm half my new gear onto an unsuspecting family member. Now where's that mini hacksaw?