Tagged, Bagged and Jet-Lagged

Having just returned from a quick jaunt, I’m reminded of how important preparation is and how much it factors into whether you have a positive travel experience or a miserable one. I can’t do anything about actual airlines, missed connections or problem passengers, but I know exactly which steps to take to ensure the journey is as stress-free as possible. This is its own sort of yoga.

The other thing that served as a reminder is Gwyneth Paltrow’s goop newsletter, which every now and then actually dishes up advice for the rest of us plebeians. Yesterday, its Packing Tips for Travel got me thinking about the way I create different outfits from a stable of elements. I think I love this aspect because it is exactly like solving a puzzle or a design problem: you have a deadline, a goal and a set of constraints. It’s also a bit like developing a yoga sequence where one pose flows into the next, then pops up later on, in a different guise. Practically-speaking, when I pack I keep it very simple, very light and mostly monochromatic. You also know that my packing secret ensures nothing gets wrinkled in transit, meaning I can pack a flouncy dress or a pressed shirt, pull it out of the suitcase and put it on without having to call housekeeping (yeah, right) or iron it myself (as if!) As for yoga, I keep that simple, as well.

(This is video is mostly here because it makes me laugh!)

Since it was a very short trip, I didn’t pack a yoga mat and practiced instead on hardwood floors. This was a bit challenging as my joints need a bit more cushion, so I did standing poses rather than seated ones, and a few handstands to clear some excess energy. Mostly, though, my yoga involved more pranayama and meditation than asana. These subtler practices are more difficult for me, yet I found that on this occasion, I reaped some very sweet rewards: more patience and more compassion. Vital qualities when visiting family and navigating airport security! ;)