I am forever a PollyAnna when it comes to packing knitting and spinning projects for a trip. This is even more evident when I pack for vacation and space/weight is a premium. Yeah, yeah, yeah. You can argue that yarn/fiber weighs next to nothing. But the still takes space, especially if you want to ensure that precious spindle doesnt get crushed and broken in the packing — as did the shaft of my Aegean. Granted, I snapped the spindle when I accidentally sat on it during cocktails, but the fact remains. It’s a risk.

Back to vacation packing thinking process… All that airport time! All that airplane time! All that down time!

Bah humbug! The reality just doesn’t match our expectations. Let’s review.

I am too self conscious to pull out my spindle project in the airport. And quite frankly, airports are not conducive to anything more complicated than plain vanilla socks. Juggling multiple balls of yarn is a recipe for disaster. That goes for airplane time too. Besides, it takes up precious carry on baggage space and weight. Most non-US intra-country flights have strict space and weight limits that are smaller than US allowance — and they check! Several from our travel group have had their carry on bags weighed and charged extra at the gate.

Airport time is taken up by long check-in and baggage lines, security lines, passport/visa control, luggage carousels, baggage inspections, transportation queues, and even more check-ins. And don’t forget the time taken to replenish your water bottles that  you had to dump at the security line and food because of the decline of meal service on flights.

Most of my flights are international and primarily overnight flights, even when they originate during the day. Yes, most of my vacations are international and it is night time somehwere along the way. Nevermind that it is cheaper for the airlines to enforce night on the passengers — less food service.

Anyway, back to nights on the plane…the cabin is dark. Unless I’m willing to be the jerk that turns on the bright overhead light when everyone is sleeping around me, I have to knit in the dark. I’m already exhausted from all the last minute chores, shopping, packing, and the rush to the vet to drop kitty off before heading to the airport. Heck! I can barely focus on the rom-com playing on the plane entertainment center, nevermind my knitting. Then there is scrambling in the dark for dropped yarn or needles or…

It’s just 15 hours of wasted time in an aluminum tube 35,000 feet in the air.

Then there is the vacation itself. My vacations are activity filled from 6 AM to basically 8 PM — or later. Every. Single. Day. This is because my vacations are primarily SCUBA diving expeditions, with the first dive of the morning at 7 AM. The last dive and dinner ends around 8 PM, with up to 5 dives a day. Each dive lasts about 60 minutes + 60 minutes prep and post dive activities. As you can see, there is not a lot of “down” time when you factor in meals.

What down time we have are filled with food, drinks, and chatter. Not very conducive to anything remotely complicated. And most definitely not conducive to fixing mistakes.

Quiet time before bed? The time between brushing my teeth and the sound of snoring is approximately 2 minutes.

No, the idea of easy brainless vacation knitting is a myth.