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2 Brain Bags, 2 Large Cafe Bags, 2 airports, 6 days trip

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    2 Brain Bags, 2 Large Cafe Bags, 2 airports, 6 days trip

    On Wednesday, I packed two Brain Bags, one steel, one sapphire with our clothes both casual for everyday and dress for a friend's wedding and other fancy dining .

    We drove north to Nashville airport on Wednesday night and spent the night at the airport La Quinta.

    We unwrapped the new EEpc netbook and small camcorder we got on Tuesday.
    My husband was like a kid in a candy store.
    (Thanks to all fellow TB forum members who answered my questions about netbooks and small camcorders thorough the years, you have been a great help)

    Packing strategy:

    One Brain Bag back compartment held a Multitasking travel Packing Cube/backpack where all our wedding dress clothes and accessories were folded and zip plastic bagged in. (I replaced the customary bulky suit by a packable dress pant/vest pair)

    The Packing Cube Shoulder Bag in the front compartment was for my sleeping outfit and foundation garments, all were zip plastic bagged as well.
    It was placed on top of two pairs of cotton denim.

    The front left pocket of the same bag held my dress shoes (low heels) size 39 or 8.30 and the other pocket my thin slippers.

    The other Brain Bag held my husband dress shoes size 42 or 9.30, 2 Tees, a pair of jeans and foundation garments in the front compartment and the brand new vest in it's packing cardboard as well as all the cd's and manuals for the netbook and camcorder.

    The left and right front pocket held cables/power supplies

    The top pocket in both bags held power supplies as well. And each bag had a 3-1-1 zip plastic bag at the top of one of the big pocket for easy retrieval.

    One Cafe Bag was used as a purse, which main compartment contained lots of Small and Medium Organizer Pouches, a Yarn Stuff Sack with a small needlework project and basic supplies including kid scissors and a Clear Quarter Cube with non liquid toiletry items.
    One O ring kept the Pouches for my glasses and my phone secure, I clipped my Guardian Dual Function Light on the other.
    The back pocket held my wind breaker and my brush in a cheap nylon pouch. Two Small Organizer Pouches with change were in the front pocket.

    The other Cafe Bag was our electronic carrier.
    We used the Soft Cell (the ancestor of the Cache) we bought for our iBookG4 in 05 to hold the EEpc securely inside the Large Cafe Bag main compartment.
    We have used that Soft Cell on all our travels with the iBook, yet the tag is still on, it looks brand new.
    In front of the Soft Cell was our point and shoot camera inside it's Padded Pouch and beside the Padded Pouch was the camcorder wrapped in protective padding then placed inside a Kit which was zipped up and held inside a Yarn Stuff Sack.
    The Cafe Bag looked like the regular purse of a yarn and needlecraft enthusiast not something that held electronic equipment.

    This was the setup for the departing flight from Nashville, the return flight from San Diego had the same setup for the Cafe Bags but one Brain Bag contained mainly plastic bagged laundry and a pair of shoes in one compartment, one pair of denim I didn't use and The Packing Cube Shoulder Bag for electronics' documentation and software in the other.

    I carried the 3-1-1 zip plastics inside the airport lunch take out plastic bag.

    My husband carried both Brain Bags from the shuttle to the airport and all the way to security and the gate, I carried both Cafe Bags.
    During boarding, I carried the lightest Brain Bag and my purse Cafe Bag.

    My passport was always on me, in the Passport Pouch, except at the security checkpoint. Southwest doesn't require passengers to show I.D at boarding.

    On our Southwest packed flights we had no trouble fitting both Brain Bags in the overhead compartment.
    I saw a lot less roll aboards than before, everybody had checked the humongous ones.

    TSA agents in Nashville and San Diego were really pleasant, the lady in Nashville was understanding when I said my feet were cold as I had forgotten to put socks on and we were not asked to take our 3-1-1 out of our Brain Bags.
    The lady in San Diego complimented me on setting aside our 3-1-1, in our lunch plastic bag.

    My Backpack Packing Cube looks like the one for the Aeronaut, I plan to buy more so that the 2 compartments of each Brain Bag is even more organized.
    Pulling out the wedding outfits in one swipe allowed us to get to the venue on time. We had to drive quite a distance from the airport to the wedding venue which explains our carry on only choice.

    Packing Cubes are a real time and headache saver.
    I recommend them for work and dress clothes which need to match and look good.

    Coupled with a Packing Cube Shoulder Bag for foundations garment, unpacking while in a hurry and/or tired is a snap.
    Large Packing Cube to closet for each outfit.
    Medium, Small, Shoulder Bag for foundation and sleeping pieces of clothing.
    Clear Quarter Packing Cube for non liquid toiletry and accessories.
    3D Clear Organizer Cube for 3-1-1 liquid toiletry and accessories even cables.

    I sound sooo much like a Tom Bihn sales person that my husband suggested I open an eastern/central branch of the store :) ;)

    But the peace of mind I got while using Tom Bihn products on this trip made every Tom Bihn purchase worth every penny.

    I already know how useful my Brain Bags are on car and train trips as well as shopping bouts on sales days or for textbook heavy classes, I now can add plane travel in time of carryon size and liquid items restrictions.
    Last edited by backpack; 09-10-2009, 09:08 AM.

    Thanks for sharing your trip report! It's always interesting to see how others manage all their gear.


      Wow. I would have liked to have seen pictures. I'm impressed you got formal clothes suitable for a wedding into a packing cube without wrinkle issues.
      Owner of : Imago, Aeronaut, Brain Bag, Smart Alec, Synapse, Co-Pilot


        Originally posted by pretzelb View Post
        Wow. I would have liked to have seen pictures. I'm impressed you got formal clothes suitable for a wedding into a packing cube without wrinkle issues.
        I didn't see your post before. Sorry for the late reply.

        The Brain Bags have long been unpacked and used for something else.

        We use microfiber as the fabric of choice for our garments. A properly packed microfiber outfit will not wrinkle.

        The garment is folded very tightly and placed in a zip plastic gallon bag, the air is let out as the slider is closing the bag. The last inch or millimeters require force to let the air out, this shrinks the size of the garment considerably.

        I have been able to pack more clothing items with that method but I don't use it for jeans, too bulky.

        I tried one of those specialty zip bags with air vents but the slider got loose after two trips making the bag unusable for clothes packing.

        So when I had to get a box of quart bags for the 3-1-1, I experimented with the shrinking method on scarves. It worked so it has become the way I pack.