the wonderful world of veena.

09 December 2013

ode to a backpack.

[friends for 14 years]
It may seem odd to you to write an ode to a backpack, but this guy has been much more than a backpack to me over the last 14 years. He's been a friend, a roommate, a pillow, a travel companion, and the co-collector of most of my memories. We've been through high school, college, and graduate school together. We've lived in Chattanooga, Memphis, Bangalore, Little Rock, and Bombay. We've traveled to Jamaica together 7 times, to the UK twice, and to the Dominican Republic, Turkey, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Paris, Nepal, and Aruba. When we were in Bangalore we traipsed all around India, visiting Coimbatore, Calcutta, Hampi, Kerala, Coorg, Gokarna, Delhi, Kurnool, Manipal, and Goa.

As my life has evolved and I have grown up, the "Veena-bag" has evolved and grown up with me, and it took a lot of convincing - and a little bit of bribery - by my father to finally get me to part with it and purchase a new backpack. I just couldn't - and sometimes still can't - picture myself going on an adventure with any other bag. I looked online and visited multiple stores, and yet I talked myself out of nearly every bag I found, because I didn't have a good answer to the question, Can this backpack keep up with me for the next 14 years?

Fourteen years is a pretty significant chunk of time, particularly for something like a backpack that we tend to throw away or forget about after a few years. I can't think of many other things I've had for 14 years, and definitely nothing that I've used as frequently over that time. Nearly everywhere I've gone in that time, this guy has gone with me. This backpack has been witness to more of my antics and adventures and amazing memories than any one person, and it's nearly impossible to imagine my next trip with a different bag.

But alas, the time has come for the Veena-bag to hang up its hat - so to speak - and enjoy its retirement. I for one certainly believe he's earned it.

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