We pulled into the retro-seventies hotel at eight in the evening, and after lugging a giant suitcase and several smaller bags into our lovely room, we reclined on the bed and opened a bottle of Pinot Gris. Bliss. Eager to see if he’d pulled it off, he popped my suitcase to reveal a terrific mound of clothes. He wasn’t kidding about the kitchen sink. He began lifting out items—bikinis? Check. Lingerie? Check. Jeans? Check. Sweaters? Wait, sweaters?
“I was worried you’d be cold,” he said. Note: the temperature in Palm Springs that weekend clocked eighty-five degrees. Nonetheless, he’d packed, not one, but four sweaters, several pairs of jeans (from the drawer of ill-fitting denim) plus a wool blazer. Mysteriously, he’d not included summer dresses or t-shirts, save one pair of shorts.
To be fair, he scored big with two out-to-dinner options: a pair of linen pants with a silk shirt and/or a dress. The only hitch with this particular beige, knit-dress being that it requires a slip.
“Could be sexy without it, no?” he said.
“Sexy for a tipsy Tara Reid,” I replied but quickly allayed his sinking expression with, “You did great; I’m so happy to be here.” And I was, truly. Even if it was with all of the weird turquoise Mac eye shadow I’ve ever bought, no jewelry, handbag, or a lick of sunscreen.
We had an amazing romantic weekend, and of course, my attire mattered not. I briefly thought about running out to buy a summer dress and cover-up but figured our dollars were better used on piña coladas by the pool. In the end, I spent most of the time in my bikinis anyway and the rest in cleverly packed lingerie (though I kept my bunny costume for the room). As for the knit dress, we borrowed a pair of scissors from the concierge and cut off the bottom of a sheer nighty in lieu of a slip. It worked perfectly at the dimly lit, outdoor restaurant and was actually kind of sexy.
In optimistic anticipation of surprise getaways to come, I’ll have to remember to make a packing list with attire for various climates. But then again, perhaps men who pack poorly for their wives are on to something after all.
Emily Southwood is a freelance journalist. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, and blogs at I Married a Pornographer.