Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Requiem for my beloved Jansport backpack

Before setting off to Cornell in the summer of 2003, my dad was on a mission: To find the perfect laptop bag for my new 15" Powerbook.

He returned home without the traditional laptop bag that I'd been expecting, instead carrying a red and grey Jansport backpack that had a secret compartment to smuggle my computer. It was claimed that the bag was made of bulletproof material, and the secret compartment could surely deter most thieves from gaining access to my most prized possession.

In the following years, that bag waltzed down Bourbon Street, road-tripped to Miami for Spring Break, sat in the White House biefing room, felt the effects of second-hand smoke in Amsterdam, passed through the Arc de Triomphe on the Champes Elysees, stared at the Sistine Chapel, climbed the steps of Gaudi's Sagrada Famiglia, drank at every decent pub in Dublin, witnessed the remnants of the Berlin Wall, trekked through markets in Northern Africa, learned about the history of Malta, slept on the beach in Tel Aviv, sipped wine in a rural Czech castle, frollicked around on the Sound of Music tour in Salzburg, drove a Landrover through Belize, ate jerk chicken in Negril, cycled across coastal England, visited Tapas bars in Northern Spain, crept up a mountain in Sicily, and road-tripped from Los Angeles to Washington state - just to name a few of our best shared experiences...

And then a zipper broke on the way from Boston back to New York before Thanksgiving. With yesterday's purchase of a new North Face backpack, the Jansport era has officially come to a close. May the next 5.5 years be a wonderful as the last...

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