Lost Luggage

Trimming the Fat

Lost Luggage

May 2019

By Joan Ochi

Riddle: I'm trying to lose weight, but I'm not on a diet. What am I doing?

If you answered "preparing to pack out," you're right! It also probably means that you too are a veteran of many an overseas move...and have experienced the anxiety of trying to pare down your belongings. Arriving at our current post in Kuwait two years ago precariously close to our family's weight limit of 7200 pounds of worldly possessions (as mandated by our employer, the U.S. State Department), we are preparing now to move back to our own Washington, DC home, which is about the size of our current living room. We are in serious purge mode.

Of course, some of what came with us will not be repatriated. For example, unaware of the bounty of our local Kuwaiti supermarket, we arrived with enough canned tomato products to stock a small 7-11. And the solid...

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