It’s an odd feeling being done with everything except for finals. It means I’ve been rather lazy since I gave a class presentation on Wednesday and I keep looking at the months of June and July, wondering how I will spend my time, especially since I don’t readily have access to a car during the day when Mike is at work (and that is the time I need to figure out how to spend).

I have briefly looked into a few things, such as volunteering, traveling, and getting SCUBA certified. Unfortunately, as free as I am during the day, most of these activities involve some combination of evenings, weekends, and/or requirements for money and transportation. I know, I’m so picky.

(NOTE: If you have a suggestion, are also looking for things to do in the San Diego area, or could use my help with something, do pipe up!)

So, at the moment, I am pursuing more mundane activities. Such as: I am in the market for a new backpack! My current one is over six years old (maybe even 10? I know I used it in high school…) and it is finally falling apart. I’m turning to you, the collective knowledge of my friends on the internets, for advice in choosing a new one.

Required features include:

  • Capable of holding a 17″ HP Pavilion dv9500 laptop with a 12-cell battery installed
  • Worn like a normal backpack (i.e., one strap over each shoulder – not a messenger bag)
  • Durable and somewhat weatherproof
  • Comfortable to wear when biking
  • Zero “extra straps” – hip strap, chest strap, etc. I’m not going hiking, I’m going to school.
  • At least one compartment sized to hold notebooks that is separate from the laptop compartment
  • At least one small compartment for miscellaneous items (pencils, bike lights, laptop power cable, mini stapler, etc.)
  • At least one external water bottle pouch
  • Sufficient space for a small lunch kit and a medium purse in addition to the aforementioned items

You’d think this would be easy, but it’s not. Behold, my current backpack:

Believe it or not, Mr. Columbia here fits all of the above criteria, except for the minor fact that it is falling apart. The straps are falling off and my laptop has worn two holes in the bottom (where its corners sit).

All right then, you have your mission; carry on.


5 thoughts on “Backpack?

  1. I thought your backpack had some sort of repair policy – didn’t you send it out to get a strap fixed a couple of years ago? Or am I remembering that wrong?

  2. haha oh Meredith.
    First, check REI’s website.
    Second, check Zappos.
    Third, for that size, you may be stuck with chest/hip straps. I had a hip strap on my backpack that I buckled backwards and it basically never bothered me.
    So :) good luck with that ….

  3. Knife/scissors are quite capable of removing chest & hip straps from a backpack if it is really that big of a deal.

    Just sayin’

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