Time for Some Product Evaluation

I bought two items new, solely to take to Finland and Iceland, and I’m taking a break from travelogue to discuss them.

I bought this Osgoode Murphy purse at Silk Moon. It’s leather, with a long strap so it can be worn messenger-style, which is how I prefer to wear purses. My purse before this one, which I used every day for four years, was also an Osgoode Murphy bag. The new bag is slightly more saddlebag shaped, with two zippered exterior pockets and a long zippered exterior compartment near the top of the purse.

Purse. Osgoode Murphy came through again.

Osgoode Murphy came through again.

I also succumbed to paranoia (and some gifted up-selling) and bought another, smaller purse,  with RFID blocking and fancy clasps on each zipper head. I never took that purse out of the suitcase.

I was going to say, “Starting in Finland, I systematically abused the purse,” but in fact I started earlier, on the plane, when I shoved my travel lanyard into it on top of the wallet, the checkbook, the address book, the business-card holder, the three energy bars, the tissues, the little metal-covered notebook, three pens, several varieties of lip balm, Advil, Airborne, a Tide stain remover stick and the last of a roll of cough drops. My phone fit perfectly in one of the zippered outer pockets, and my little Canon camera fit perfectly in the other pocket. I shoved my car and house keys into the zippered interior pocket, and my phone charger and electric converter in the long outer compartment. Over the course of the trip, I tugged that out and shoved it back in about seventeen times.

At WorldCon I folded up brochures and stuffed them in on top of everything else. I did have a tote bag, and I used it, but more and more smaller items, gift items mostly, went into the purse.

In Iceland, the purse got drenched by salt spray twice (boat trips). It got jammed down next to my feet or shoved against my side. I caught the strap on things at least twice. I did catch the fabric lining of the purse in the teeth of the zipper once when I was shoving my charging apparatus back into the purse for about the fifteenth time. Once I worked loose the fabric, the zipper was fine.

The purse is shiny as ever, and holding up as well as ever. No scuffs, no gaps.  Tonight, it gets a leather-balm spa treatment.

Lightweight cashmere poncho.

Lightweight cashmere poncho.


While I was at the Mendocino Coast Writers Conference I bought this cashmere mini-poncho at Rainsong. It was expensive for something that is basically a sweater ($149).

It’s very light, and quite warm. The color is blue-gray. I brought a fleece jacket and a water-resistant jacket on the trip, I mainly used the poncho for evenings and a couple of morning walks. It was perfect. Since it’s so light, it could be easily stuffed into my tote bag for day trips.

Poncho folded with a dollar bill for size comparison.

This is neatly folded. I could actually scrunch it down smaller than this if I had to.

At Rainsong, the sales rep said she had women who “bought one in every color” (and I’m sure that’s true), or “one for the car and one for the house. They’re a little pricey by my lights, so I’ll settle for the blue, but one was worth the price.




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2 Responses to Time for Some Product Evaluation

  1. Chad Hull says:

    I love the dollar for scale.

  2. Marion says:

    It seemed efficient. I wanted to put down a dollar bill next to some small crabs I saw in Hawaii, but I couldn’t get close enough… and I needed my dollars for tips.

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