The Girl with a Purple Suitcase

I still remember my first suitcase. I got it for Christmas when I was five years old. It was purple and turquoise, and it had wheels and a telescoping handle. It even had my name on the front in dark purple vinyl letters. I remember unwrapping the giant box and pulling out my new suitcase. It was so tiny, but it looked enormous to my small five-year-old mind. I took it with me to San Diego.

I still have a purple suitcase. A purple suitcase, a blue suitcase, and a little carry-on with weird hand-painted chili peppers that I found at Goodwill.

Today I read a blog called “A Girl With a Suitcase.” The author wrote about a little girl she knows who asked for a suitcase for Christmas. It seemed poetic, she said.

There really is something poetic about suitcases and people who crave them. Suitcases are either full of adventures or full of memories. I wish we still had the old hard-case suitcases with the virtually irremovable airline stickers. I think those are a lovely way to collect memories of where we’ve been.


The suitcase I got when I was five took me to San Diego and Phoenix. What big adventures for a little girl! The suitcase I have now has taken me to Africa, the Bahamas, Michigan, Oregon and St. Maarten.

Where has your suitcase taken you?

The places I’ve been have shaped who I am. Many of my biggest moments have happened while living out of a suitcase. I got engaged while living out of a suitcase. I met a forever friend at camp while living out of a suitcase. I found my purpose in life while living out of a suitcase.

I suppose I owe my wanderlust to my parents. Five years old is a special age. It’s an age when we begin to learn who we are. They could have given me anything for Christmas, but they gave me a suitcase. And they gave me a new purple suitcase when the wheels broke and the letters of my name peeled off the first one. They took me on plane trips almost every year and road trips at least biannually. They taught me to discover, to learn, to experience.

This year for Christmas, they got on a plane and came to my home so many miles away from theirs. They gave me Lucky Charms, makeup, clothes….

….And a suitcase.


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