New Toy

Back when I had just passed the CAPES and was planning for the beginning of the new (first) school year, I decided to not buy myself an expensive (=durable) teacher’s bag (cartable) and to live with just something that would get me through the year. I bought something red, stretchy, and relatively cute, for under 50 euros.

Here’s what’s become of it:

Looks okay, right?

Except that the latch is slowly detaching itself from the bag.

And this side of the strap is tearing off.

And it's lost one of its screws.

On top of all of this, it’s too small. I often carry my tape/CD player to work, plus my school-issued netbook (and sometimes, though rarely, my own computer), plus my lunch, and then sometimes my umbrella. None of those things, obviously, would fit in this bag. Since we don’t have our own classrooms, I never set everything down for the day. I carry it all around with me between classes. And though the CD player seems like a lost cause, I decided to go for something that would have some hope of holding all the other things.

Here’s a blog post (in French) that sums up well the dilemma of the typical cartable de professeur:

Seriously, I put a lot of thought into this. I looked at what the other teachers have, thought about what I carry with me and would like to carry with me every day, thought about the health of my back and shoulders. I poked around online, thinking about ordering something. But unless I could really look at it, I didn’t feel ready spending money on it. So I went to the maroquinerie in Poitiers today and settled on this:

It's beautiful.

In French, you could say it’s costaud. It has a five-year warranty and you’re supposed to be able to throw it around an airplane without damage. It’s ten times lighter than it looks. Everything fits in it. It’s like my own portable office. We won’t talk about the price.

The inside

I’m so excited.


One thought on “New Toy

  1. looks swell but it needs wheels. I have something I love and it has wheels. Don’t feel like an old lady—you know you must love your back.
    I don’t like to put electronics in it if I am going to haul it over cobbles, which StM has, and France has more of, but a shoulder bag with only the ipad and the macbook air is an accessory to the wheeled bag

    But that thing you found, attached to a wheely frame, you know how you can get those separately? would be so freeping awesome

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