I just thought I would post on the sizing of the small versus medium cafe bags, because I know some advice would have been helpful while I was deciding which one to purchase.
I am not a light traveler. I normally carry what I call my ďpanic bagĒ, which has everything I could need for a variety of situations Ė anything from spontaneously staying over at a friendís house to surviving the first three days of a zombie strike. I had a small Timbuk2 bag that was perfect as my panic bag, but I noticed that as summer rolled into Toronto I was beginning to resent lugging my panic bag out to patio lunches on my work hour when I knew I would unlikely encounter either a zombie strike or a sleep over.
So I wanted to move away from my panic bag to something I could throw my wallet, work keys, lip chap and sunglasses into and tote with me around the city on short day trips.
I got the Medium Cafe Bag in Plum/Wasabi, and I love it. Even though I had measured out itís approximate size, I was still shocked at how large it seemed. I managed to put my water bottle, my Moleskine, my fountain pen case, wallet, keys, cell, lip chap, iPod and huge earphones, glasses (in their case) and my hair stick case into it, with plenty of extra room at the top. It was roomy and gorgeous and I loved it. I actually added a truncated survival kit (basically a mini first aid kit) to the bag and am now using it as my everyday bag. Iíll just have to accept that Iíll only survive the first day of a zombie strike now. Oh well!
Then I began thinking Ė if there is so much extra room in the medium, why not try the small? Maybe it would fit better. I ordered it in Navy/Crimson, and although it was equally beautiful, when I transferred all my stuff into the Small Cafe Bag from the medium one, the small one was packed to the hilt, which made it uncomfortable to carry on my hip. That extra space in the bag allows it to mold to your body a lot more comfortably.
I kept the Small Cafe Bag anyway. Iím leaving it at work to serve the purpose I originally bought it for Ė something I can transfer my wallet, sunglasses, and keys into when I head out from work for a short trip, errand or patio lunch.
The main point of my post is this Ė if you do not tend to travel super light, I suggest the Medium Cafe Bag rather than the small one. Although there may seem to be a fair bit of space once youíve packed everything into the medium one, if you try to shift it into the Small Cafe Bag it might not work out so well.
On a final note, Iím still feeling kind of antsy about not lugging everything I could possibly need with me all the time. I like the security of being prepared for absolutely any situation. Therefore, Iím going to try and create a step between the Medium Cafe Bag and my Timbuk2 bag in the form of the Imago Ė not quite a full panic bag, but hopefully a bit more prepared for the apocalypse than I feel with the Medium Cafe Bag. I got it in Steel/Steel/Sapphire. Itís incredibly beautiful, and I think it will serve me well. But right now Iím too in love with the Medium Cafe Bag to pay it much attention.
Thanks Tom Bihn, for encouraging me to move away from traveling with everything including the kitchen sink on my shoulders!