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In anticipation for my next trip to Japan, I got myself a new backpack. Jian offered to lend me his backpack, but his is too masculine looking & large, & it would make me look like an odd shaped turtle waddling down the slim streets of Kyoto. Therefore, I opted to pick out my very own backpack. Why buy a backpack? Well, Jian & I have been using his backpack on our last several trips, & it is such an incredible convenience. I hate hauling around my over-sized & cumbersome purse when I’m on vacation, especially when I’m traveling to a hot weather destination. Also, I hate it when I constantly have to stop & adjust the strap(s) of my purse. Well, I could get myself a travel purse, but let’s face it. Those travel purses look like old lady bags (no offense to women of an older age…) & they’re just overall unattractive (& more expensive than the backpack I just got). A backpack is so much cooler looking, even though they still scream “Look at me! I’m a bloody bumbling tourist.

Originally, I had bought a backpack from the brand Fjällräven, but I had to return it because I had picked the wrong size. I accidentally got the child-sized bag instead of the adult size, & to my defense, the website was very confusing in their description. They don’t ever mention the dimensions (i.e. height, width, etc.) of the backpack, but instead they list how many ‘litres’ the bag can carry. Since I’m not familiar with the European metric system, obviously it was harder for me to figure out. I was going to exchange the backpack for a larger size, but decided it would just be easier to return everything & get something else for myself. I was a little bummed that this backpack didn’t work out for me. It had a super cute fox patch already on it, & you know how I am about foxes (LOVE THEM, hence the blog name.)

fjallraven

This is a sample of the first backpack I accidentally chose & the backpack next to it, was the one I was intending to get. (All photo credits belong to www.fjallraven.us)

So here is the backpack I ended up getting. It’s from a brand called hellolulu, & I think this backpack is sooo much cuter & more practical for my needs than the other bag I returned. I got this backpack from Flight 001, a travel store, during their backpack & luggage campaign. I still kept the mustard-ish yellow color, & I am so happy with what I got. Here is a proper description of my backpack as described from the website:

Make your everyday commute in the city a mini-adventure. Tate is here to declutter your journey by neatly and effortlessly organizing your belongings. The main zippered compartment, with magnetic closures, features an internal padded laptop sleeve, storage pockets, and pen slots. The exterior features two side slip pockets as well as a front zippered pocket with a key clip. The bag’s water-repellant coating allows you to take this bag anywhere to do anything, rain or shine.

Features and Benefits:

  • Polyester body with water-repellant & heavy duty UTX Duraflex buckles/accessories
  • Internal laptop compartment fits up to a 13″ laptop

Measurement: 11″ x 6.7″ x 16.1″

_DSC3017

Shall I give it a name?

hellolulu5

The straps are adjustable & very comfortable.

hellolulu2

This clip attaches to the ends of your shoulder strap to tuck them neatly out of the way.

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The front pocket is padded & large enough to fit an iPad sized tablet, & it even has a discreet carabiner for keys. The pocket on the side is roomy enough for large water bottles.

hellolulu3

There is an additional pocket on the other side as well.

hellolulu4

I love the green accents just on the zipper pulls to give the backpack a pop of color & a break from all that yellow.

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The opening of the main compartment has both a zipper closure & a magnetic closure for added security.

hellolulu1

There are FOUR additional pockets inside the main compartment. The largest pocket is also padded & able to hold up to a 13″ laptop.

I am so excited to be able to use this backpack in the future. This is going to be my new travel companion from now on, so I won’t have to only rely on Jian’s backpack, & I won’t have to schlepp around my bulky purse all the time. I’m thinking that this backpack would also be perfect to use on my annual Thanksgiving tradition of visiting Disneyland. My trip to Japan is still one month away, but I’m already itching to decorate this backpack with charm straps for the zippers & patches for the front. I might just post an update on how this backpack looks after I’ve decorated it. Until then, cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

“Wave” by Antonio Carlos Jobim

wave by jobim

The time is upon me. I am finally going to Mexico for that oh-so-special destination wedding I’ve been mentioning on this blog. My cousin is finally getting hitched, & the whole family clan is high tailing down to Sayulita (a.k.a. the Puerto Vallarta region) for a long weekend of partying, rain, scorching heat, & high humidity. It’s going to be a blast. I’m not very keen on attending weddings, so I’m anxious eager to get this show on the road & over with. One thing that I’ve never mentioned about myself is that I enjoy packing suitcases for vacations/trips. I’m not exactly sure why I enjoy this mundane task. Perhaps it’s the ‘extreme organizer’ side of my personality that can really shine in this area. Or it could just be that I like packing & stowing things away into little tiny compartments like a Japanese bento box. I get a special thrill when I’m able to pack a shitload (pardon my French) of toiletries, clothes, accessories & such into a small rolling suitcase without breaking the zipper or the scale at the check-in station. (There were TWO times when I was able to stow a full-size umbrella into my suitcase & not break the umbrella or the suitcase. Except, I did poke a small hole in one of the incidents.) Every time I pack for a trip, I like to stock up on little travel sized toiletries (i.e. toothpaste, hair products, drug store medicine, etc.) & make list upon list of things I need to pack & things I need to get squared away in preparation for my departure (i.e. place travel notices on credit cards, add International travel feature on mobile phone plan, place a vacation hold on mail & newspapers, etc.). No matter how much I try to scale down the amount of items in my suitcase, I always feel like my luggage is going to burst. Through my many travels over the years, I feel like I’ve somewhat learned how to streamline my suitcase packing, but I’m still somehow over-stuffing my suitcase. So, recently, I invested in a space saver garment bag (well, two to be exact…one for me and one for my companion). This space saver bag was not cheap, but it was well worth it. I only wish I had purchased one a long time ago, it would have made all of my trips to Asia so much easier! As per most of my travel-related products, I purchased this space saver garment bag (a.k.a. Spacepak) from the Flight 001 store.

spacepak collage1

spacepak collage2

I’m going to try this out & see if I like it. It’s just one more thing to help keep me on top of my organizational game. I’m so excited to finally celebrate my cousin’s wedding in Mexico! Cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

“Move On Now by Hard-Fi”

move on now hardfi

I see this popular trend on YouTube about ladies sharing the contents of their purses.  I even once made a video about that topic once upon a time; that was when I first tried my hand at YouTube a long time ago.  Now, I’ve decided to do another “What’s in my bag?” style post.  No matter how hard I try to keep things simple, I just can’t seem to shrink the size of my bag or minimize the contents within.  Let’s be Nosy Nancy’s and take a look-see, shall we?

DSC2593_Fotor1. Le Sportsac purse organizer, a “free” gift from a Japanese fashion magazine
2. iPad 2 & 3. Bose noise-cancelling headphones
4. Madewell slim glasses case & 5. Prada sunglasses
6. Rootote purse keychain & 7. Kate Spade “Eat Cake For Breakfast” tote purse
8. Porter Yoshida Classic raw denim pouch & 9. Small calendar planner/journal
10. Strawberry flavored mints, 11. Carmex chapstick & 12. Sample-sized lipgloss
13. Comme des Garçon medium leather wallet w/ NEIGHBORHOOD dice keychain
14. Tempo brand jasmine scented tissue pack

Want to see what’s inside that conspicuous denim pouch???

DSC2596_Fotor
1. Wet Ones hand-wipes & 2. Bandages
3. Muji folding brush & 4. Small bottle of Aesop hand lotion
5. Spare set of keys, 6. denim pouch & 7. Spare headphones
8. Emergency pill box (Translation: Very hot, please be careful.)
9. Pilot Frixon Ball Gel Ink Erasable 0.5mm Pens in black & blue
10. Muji scissors pen & 11. Tide stain-remover pen
12. Ladies’ feminine you-know-whats

Guys who use man bags (a.k.a. “murse”) are hot. Well, I don’t like to use the word “hot”, but they are VERY attractive.  I find guys who use man bags to be very intriguing.  I can’t exactly explain this attraction.  It is what it is.

However, not all guys who use bags are attractive.  For example: no generic PC bags from the mall, no backpacks, no book bags, no bike-messenger bags, & no pretentious metal briefcases.  I like guys who use small bags, or technical waist pouches (which are NOT to be confused with a fanny pack).  These are also bag types that men use which I find attractive: leather tote bag, small postal bag or satchel, a business-casual or slim laptop bag, a soft leather briefcase, or anything else that looks technical.  I like it when a guy uses his bag naturally, with comfort & ease.  I don’t like guys who use bags as a fashion accessory just because it’s the trend of the moment.  It just has to be natural, simple & functional.

I know there are many guys who think using any type of bag, other than for school/work or grocery shopping, is not cool or acceptable in any way.  To those men, using a bag to carry your non-business/non-school related items is just such an overly feminine gesture, & it’s rather demeaning for males to do such a thing.  But those guys are just too chicken to explore & to dare themselves to do something out of the ordinary.  Plus, that just makes you so blind to our modern society….where everything is pretty much UNI-SEX, & the Uni-Sex style is a hot trend right now.  Besides, it’s not like you’re being asked to wear skirts (no offense to Scottish kilts) and/or makeup (no offense to Goths & Emo kids). Guys who use man bags are AWE-SOME…& it’s not cool when your pants pockets are puffing out & bulging with your personal effects (i.e. junk).

Not very many guys carry a lot of stuff  in our Western society. Most guys only carry  their slim smart-phone, slim wallet, and a basic set of keys.  However, there are more & more guys popping up who like to carry: a notebook (for random notes or doodling), a book (to read on a bus or train), or an mp3 player…something more than just your average phone/wallet/keys. It’s not cool when you try to stuff everything in your pockets (even if you are wearing cargo pants). Nowadays, more & more guys are carrying laptops, tablets and/or eReaders.  Hey, practically every guy in Asia uses a man bag…even kids as young as 10 years old use them. It’s just so common.  To me, when I see a guy carrying a man bag, I find it very normal (& pretty damn sexy).  It’s no different than lugging around your book bag when you were in college.  It also goes along with the whole “Metrosexual” trend that’s extremely popular these days.

So to all you men out there…go get yourself a bag, baby!

Some examples:

source: TokyoFashion.com

source: TokyoFashion.com

source: TokyoFashion.com

source: TokyoFashion.com

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