The Ellington bag arrived, and it exceeded even its advance publicity. I realized I needed to purchase a duplicate immediately.
But, of course, the highly rated bag was no longer available. I wrote to eBags, and they wrote back, apologizing but noting that the manufacturer had discontinued the model.
I checked and discovered that Ellington now offered a more casual pack-style purse that looked like something you'd lug on a weekend trip, not take to a business meeting. After more than a year of searching in vain for the nicer, original bag at discount sites and on eBay, I gave up and began hunting for a replacement bag. The plan was to get either a similar backpack purse or a shoulder bag with multiple compartments.
In the past few months I've looked at thousands of bags, and have bought (and returned) a couple. My beloved backpack purse is showing increasing signs of wear, and I'm getting a little anxious.
Though I haven't found a bag I like, I now speak fluent "purse." I know that what I want is described as:
- a shoulder bag
- north-south (that means vertical)
- with a platform (that means a flat bottom) - at least 3" deep
- with an extruded exterior zip pocket (you could fit a wallet and Treo into it)
- with an exterior slip pocket (no clasp - you can slide a brochure into it)
- with a top zip main compartment (secure, but no flap to fuss with)
- with an interior zip compartment (security in the main compartment)
- It should not be a shapeless sack.
- It should not be a rigid box.
- It should not look like an overstuffed couch somebody sat on and squashed in the middle.
- It should not look like part of a cowboy costume.
- It should not look like it's been active in the bondage scene.
- It should not remind anyone of a lime green daschund.
My problem seems to be that all the bags that meet my criteria are "totes," which by definition have two short handles rather than a long shoulder strap. The bags with the long shoulder straps turn out to be either:
- vast, undivided pits into which your possessions vanish (you know what I mean -- the kind women rummage frantically in while everyone around them rolls their eyes);
- narrow leather envelopes-on-a-strap into which you can slip maybe a couple credit cards and some charge slips (keys would make an unsightly lump); or
- sealed with a big, heavy, flap so you need two hands free to get anything into or out of them.
As my dad used to say, "Sheesh!"