I can't believe I almost forgot to blog about the suitcase!
I've had the same carry-on suitcase for about 9 years. Originally Lorin bought it for Judy, but Judy liked the one I bought at Costco better (because it's ever so slightly larger) so we switched. It's a mid-sized rollerboard suitcase; the kind that you can take as a carry-on for most flights. Anyway, it's black and plain, but it's been my faithful traveling companion to lots and lots of countries. Naturally, it was the one I packed all my stuff in for my most recent trip.
When I got to the airport, I pulled my suitcase out of the trunk and tried to pull the handle up. Nothing. I jimmied it for like 4 minutes and finally got it to come up. Which pretty much sums up what happened every time I tried to get my suitcase handle up for the whole trip. If it had been a trip to Hawaii or something, that wouldn't have been a big deal. But because we stayed in six hotels, we were moving every 2 or 3 days, so it was pretty awkward to always be trying to get my suitcase handle up. When we got to Turkey, it gave up completely. So I used my scarf to pull it, and that worked alright. Coming home I checked it so I wouldn't have to deal with it. And now I'm throwing it away.
RIP suitcase. We made a good run of it, dear friend.