Monday, January 7, 2019

Ten Things You Should Always Carry with You

Today is January 7, which on the Jewish calendar this year (5779) is 1 Shevat, my mother's yahrzeit, commemorating the date of her death.  (Technically I'm writing this on 2 Shevat, as it is after sundown, but it's the first time I've had a chance to sit down and write all day.)  For a couple of years now I have written about my mother on her yahrzeit as part of my effort to record and share stories about her.

I think it was around the time I started college that my mother told me about the "ten things you should always carry with you."  These were the basics that she felt you needed to have on you wherever you went.  I vaguely recall her saying that someone had taught her the list when she was yonger, maybe when she started dating.

So what are the ten things, you ask?  They are:

driver's license
dime for phone
and . . . ?

And I'm so disappointed that's all I can remember now!  Did anyone else's mother teach them this?  I'm hoping someone can fill in the blanks for me.  I really did have this memorized at one time.

Of course, my mother's list looks somewhat dated now.  A dime for a phone?  It's difficult to find pay phones anymore, and when you do, they certainly don't cost a dime.  Besides, mobile phones are now ubiquitous.  Not as many people smoke nowadays, so a lot of people wouldn't be carrying the cigarettes and lighter.

If I were to redo her list based on what I actually carry around, it would be:

driver's license
mobile phone
lip balm

And that's about it, at least based on the parts of her list I can remember.


Update, January 15, 2019:

I was looking at a vintage compact at a store recently and realized that's what it should be instead of a mirror on the list.


Update, January 22, 2020:

Aha!  I think I remembered another item:  sunglasses.  And it had to be sunglasses, not regular glasses, because my mother didn't wear glasses.


  1. Your list is short and sweet and I like it. I would add either some cash or a credit card. One never knows if you'd need to purchase something (like gasoline, new tire, or food).

  2. It's ironic that you commented on how short my list is, because I used to carry a lot more around. I really started traveling light after I started working as a train operator.

    I realized I should have said I carry my wallet, not just my drier's license, on the list of things I take with me. That encompasses the cash and the credit cards. But I'm thinking that maybe a credit card was one of the items on my mother's list.


All comments on this blog will be previewed by the author to prevent spammers and unkind visitors to the site. The blog is open to everyone, particularly those interested in family history and genealogy.