Crikey - it's not that easy! At least our hats are ready to go!
In the meantime.... Thelma is still practising walking in heels, and has just bought a suitcase.
The woman in the shop tried to sell her one big enough for the two of us and our gear to travel in; something you really wouldn't want to be lugging around everywhere, on and off trains etc. These days you can't actually leave your luggage anywhere unattended, or they call in the bomb people. A giant suitcase would be a bit of an albatross.
Betty: It's your turn to mind the suitcase!
Thelma: No, I minded it last time, remember, when you went to the loo, and you were gone for ages!
(This in itself would be a dreadful thing, as women are renowned for going to the loo in pairs. The existence of a giant suitcase would render this time-honoured tradition impossible to uphold.)
So - a sensible suitcase has been bought, in a becoming shade of simply red. Now, what to put in it? The rule of thumb is that if you don't want to be carrying it on and off trains and up and down escalators for a fortnight, leave it behind.
And then there's the carry-on luggage. Being the sophisticated international travellers that we are pretending to be, we don't want to arrive in England looking as if we've been pulled through a hedge backwards - but dear me it's hard to look fabulous after 24 hours in a flying sardine can filled with fake air. Our emergency skin care, toothpaste, deodorant, cosmetics and the biggie - hand sanitiser - have to be squished into tiny tiny bottles (of no greater than 100ml capacity) and sealed in a plastic bag no bigger than 20 x 20cm so that the screeners at the airport can see that we're not trying to bring explosives on board, cunningly concealed in, say, a 125ml bottle of emu oil (my favourite moisturiser).
Lucky me, though - my lovely friend Anna gave me a collection of LAGs*-legal skin care as part of my birthday pressie last week! Here's how it won't look once I've chucked it all into my sealable plastic LAGs* bag:
Today I am shopping for something orange. Not sure what - but my entire travel wardrobe at the moment is black or olive green, and I want something bright!
*LAGs - Liquids, aerosols and gels.