Women’s Backpacks For School

Heading back to school is not just for kids these days. With all the down-sizing going around having a better education plays a major role. This means hitting the educational trail!

This is not grade school here this is college and we are not adolescents we are woman and like most woman we still want fashion as well as practicability. Especially since (depending you work load) you will be toting a round enough books you could start your own lending facility.

While a tote bag might be an adorable accessory, it is really not doable for heavy awkward books. And…regardless if basic black is chic in dresses; in backpacks for school – it’s just not cool.

Relax, take a deep breath because there are numerous schoolbags out there that take the brunt of the weight off your back, hold all your books as well as everyday personal items and still sport a very fashion forward look. Plus a lot of these backpacks are inexpensive enough to allow you purchase more than one so you will be able to accessorize. All women know how important that is!

For the lighter lab days consider a Baggallini. They are ideal for a couple of small books, an essential note pad, writing tools and any other fundamental necessities. These bags are neither your everyday average backpack nor do they offer any flashy statement. They are simply stately. They come in leather or nylon and offer up zipper pockets, adjustable handles, and magnetic closures. Additionally Baggallini backpacks are more than just backpacks. They multiply their advantage by being able to be converted to crossbody bags or just an everyday purse.

When you are picking and choosing your backpacks check out the Seal Line for spotlighting seriousness and dependability. They are the top of the line in the weather defying field. If rain or sleet and snow are threatening your college campus, be sure to pull out this backpack. With it sturdy straps it’s the one you’ll need when biking to school or walking across the university grounds in muck and mire.

If you’re looking to impress professors and dazzle them with your organizational skills then an Ellington is a must. They have bags that provide numerous inside and outside pockets, along with an amazing panel that will allow you to make sure there is a place for everything and everything is in its place. Even your keys! It’s a take charge kind of backpack.

There are other lines of backpacks for school you can consider. The Overland Cambridge backpack screams professionalism and efficiency. The Flyweight from North Face offers durability with seemingly weightlessness. Finally for the “girl” in us all there are the Harajuku backpacks for school. They offer sweet and appealing mixed with amusement all lying within their Japanese trend setting scenes.

The Girls of Harajuku, Japan

For the Virgin traveller in Japan, Harajuku is one of those ‘must see’ places on the Japan tourist circuit. Without a doubt the most famous street of Harajuku’s is Takeshita. It is highly doubtful that you will see such a place back home – taking into consideration that I am originally from a place of 3,000 people and sheep outnumber humans by 1000:1 it holds especially true for me.

So who are these infamous Harajuku Girls?

Harajuku gyaru (girl) is the phrase most commonly used to identify girls who hang around Tokyo’s Harajuku district. And of the many varied sites, definitely some of the more eye-catching are the lithe figures of the girls that flank the streets there. A word of warning though, “All that glitters is not gold” and all that looks like a girl is often not either.

You will find the fashion styles not only diverse but in some cases exceedingly bizarre. I often notice myself mentally ‘high fiving’ the girls for their courage and complete lack of self-consciousness. Here are a few of the genres that I have been privileged to see in my trips down those lanes: Gothic Lolita, Gothic Maid, Wamono, Decora, Second-Hand Fashion, and Cyber Fashion (which tends to feature goggles, masks, leather and latex.) In one of my more memorable trips I even saw several girls wearing fake blood and bandages.

What possesses these girls to dress in such an outrageous (and often provocative) way you ask yourself…

A number of of them are evidently doing their best to imitate rock bands such as Japan X (this band almost deserves a post of it’s own.) If we put on our social anthropology coats and glasses (or goggles if you want to get into the swing of it) and burrow deeper we can appreciate that for many others this is a form of escapism. At the peril of over-generalizing I have observed Japan to be a very homogeneous society and this weekly indulgence allows them to briefly escape the majority of the rules of Japanese society. It gives them individuality not as certainly apparent while wearing their usual school uniforms or workplace costume. And perhaps at the heart it gives these wonderful ladies an outlet to express, often in very sexual ways (with ripped stockings, garters, and mini-skirts, etc), the oppression of the Japanese female in their predominantly male dominated society.

I have created the opportunity to talk to quite a a small number of of these girls over the years to try and grasp what makes them ‘tick’ and found the Harajuku Girls, underneath all the make-up and bling, to be like the girl next door – tremendously polite, gracious and warm-hearted.

Hannibal Missouri – A Ghost Town?

It’s not a ghost town yet but it’s getting there. I spent a day in Hannibal, Missouri. I’m a high school English teacher and just couldn’t pass up the chance to visit the home of the American author, Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain. Mid-July I expected the streets of Hannibal to be teeming with sightseers anxious to catch a glimpse of the spot on the Mississippi River where Twain’s hero Huck Finn set sail on his raft . I thought folks would be lined up in droves to tour the Clemens homestead and visit the caves where Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn had so many adventures. But on a steamy summer afternoon I browsed in solitary pleasure through shops replete with Twain novels, biographies and souvenirs. A Japanese tourist and a father and son from England were the only other people visiting Becky Thatcher’s cottage with me. A boy and girl dressed up like Tom Sawyer and his girlfriend Becky looked bored as they waited for tourists to show up and pay $7 to have their picture taken with the famous literary couple. Horse drawn carriages toured the city carting only a few passengers each. I attended an excellent one-man show put on by actor Richard Garey. Standing on a stage crammed with Twain memorabilia, Garey did a lively and educational re-creation of one of Twain’s lectures and story telling presentations. Mark Twain traveled across the United States entertaining crowds of people in the late 1800’s Unfortunately only eight of us were in attendance at the show Garey staged in Hannibal on a July night.

Don’t get me wrong. Hannibal, Missouri is charming. It’s just that the whole place appears to be a little ‘down on its luck.’ We stopped at two bed and breakfast establishments that looked lovely and appealing in the brochures we’d picked up. The doors were locked, the paint peeling and the yards overgrown. The high school English teacher who supplemented his income by running the book store at the Mark Twain museum had plenty of time to ‘talk shop’ with me since I was his only customer. We wanted to try a local Hannibal restaurant for supper, but by seven o’clock many were closed, and others I have to admit looked just a little on the seedy side. We finally settled on Lula Belles, a former bordello turned now into a respectable eatery. It was founded by an enterprising madam from Chicago at the turn of the century. The food was hardly gourmet, but the portions were plentiful and the service friendly. You couldn’t help remembering however that it used to be a centre for gambling and prostitution and was frequently raided by the police. Did the ‘ladies of the evening’ who made their living there a hundred years ago still haunt the place one wondered?

Literary tourism appears to be flourishing. People are flocking to the sites mentioned in the popular book the Da Vinci Code. The Prince Edward Island tourist industry thrives on the Anne of Green Gables books authored by Lucy Maud Montgomery. So what’s the problem in Hannibal, Missouri, the setting for Twain’s novels? I checked some traveler review web sites which mentioned several reasons for Hannibal’s decline including lack of advertising, limited hours of operation and an almost cynical attitude amongst residents about their famous home town author.

I enjoyed Hannibal, Missouri and was glad I had visited. Hopefully the town will be able to make the necessary changes to attract more tourists. Otherwise it might become a place inhabited only by the ghosts of Mark Twain and the interesting cast of characters he created in his memorable novels.