I’ve been staring at my suitcase now for close to thirty minutes. I pulled it out from my parent’s closet, on the top shelf that I can only reach by standing on my tiptoes. It was buried under three other suitcases that almost toppled onto my head as I yanked the largest looking one from the bunch. The suitcase is large, kind of square, black, tan inside, rather dusty, smells like my parents. But soon it will smell like me.
I stand up and grab the one item I know I will need from my closet: the adventure hat. Most of my friends know what the adventure hat is; an old, felt black hat that I’ve had far too long. I take it everywhere and Granada, Spain will be no exception. I cross my room again and look at my shelves littered with all things Anna. I need to bring something that will remind me of home, something I can touch. I sidle out old photographs between piles of my favorite books. Then I pick up the pile of my favorite books. I throw in a jar filled with shells, a stone carved elephant, a music box. I see my three favorite nursery rhymes told in a book smaller than the palm of my hand and a scorpion enclosed in a glass box. I rake up clothes from the floor and a few dresses– hangers still on– and throw them in. I close the suitcase and sit on it. A sleeve tickles my leg. This is going quite well. Granada here I come.
I’ve never been particularly keen on packing. It’s not that I’m bad at it. The longest I’ve ever packed for is a month; the contents of my suitcase stay relatively the same over the course of my time in a foreign place. I know this time the contents of my suitcase will change drastically. I might throw away things or leave my stone elephant behind. Pick up new clothes and throw old ones away. The tan interior of my suitcase gathering all the miniscule transformations until when I arrive back home, toward the end of the summer, my suitcase will reflect the collective change upon unzipping the zipper and letting the contents spill forth. It will always be the same ratty, black suitcase; just the inside will have changed.
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<p>My name is Anna Suszynski and I live in Colorado. I will graduate in 2016 from Colorado College having studied to be an English major, Creative Writing Track. I love to read, ski, go to as many concerts as I can, hang out with my mom, hike, take way too many photographs, and get lost. </p>