If I wasn't bringing five books for various people, I would be able to get my socks into the suitcase. (I have this enormous list of everything I need - documents, gifts, electronics, med stuff, clothing, toiletries - just so when the question arose of DID I REMEMBER TO PACK...., I could look at it and say Yeah, its in the outer pouch of the bigger bag. I was feeling quite smug until I noticed that the list didn't include socks.)
I could put two or three of the books into the carry on bag, but it's a funny thing; unlike socks and stuff, they don't bend. Not a real problem for the airplane, but the TGV? Yeah, could be. So suddenly I'm thinking you know, you COULD just mail some of them from the US. . You don't HAVE to physically hand them over. And in fact two of them, for the children of my friend in Greasque, HAVE to be mailed, because I'm not going anywhere south of Paris. So other than the novel experience of going to a French post office -- je voudrais envoyer cette boite, s'il vous plait. Oui, monsieur - and then he asks the French equivalent of what class, anything breakable, are you sending liquids.... and I do my Harpo Marx impression. Yeah, maybe mailing from the US would be a good idea for those two books And using the bigger suitcase -- its not massive, by any means -- maybe that would be a good idea,too. Makes the carry on more collapsible. Gives me room for souvenirs.
Just that - I know this is silly -- I kind of wanted to do it with the smallest of the bags. Just to prove to myself that I could. I'm not 22, I'm not skinny, I have big feet, I can't wear the same clothes four days running -- but still. Just to prove that I could.