My briefcase. It's a really nice case, but I no longer have any current need for it, and if all goes according to plan, I never will. It doesn't suit my style, and those aren't even my initials any more. But this briefcase has a long history. It was a farewell gift from my coworkers, given to me long ago (in fact, 25 years this month) when I quit my job, sold most of my belongs, packed the rest into a hatchback Mustang and left New England to drive clear across the country to Southern California. I had no job waiting for me, knew no one, and had no place to live. For a quiet, shy, unassuming young woman, man I had some balls, eh?
This briefcase moved across country with me, accompanied me to many interviews, functioned as a file draw when I lived in a tiny studio, followed me from apartment to apartment and house to house, and served me well for many years throughout my career at a certain academic institution. This briefcase stayed the course with me as I followed a sometimes uncertain path, gradually feeling my way until I found myself and came to be where I am now.
It's time to pass it on. I rather hope it finds it way to some young woman out there starting out on her own path. But whoever it finds its way to, I'm sure it will serve them well.