A woman’s handbag is her personal toolbox that she carries wherever she goes. Inside it are the tools she needs to get through the day.
It is a portable storage room with multiple compartments for putting different items.
It is a container containing other containers sewn separately together to provide maximum storage facilities.
Just like clothes, there is a handbag for every occasion. In formal dining events, for instance, a small purse which can be clutched easily in one hand is often preferred.
The ‘weekend bag’ on the other hand is the largest bag in the handbag closet in which you can put everything when you are going to spend a few days away from home.
It is more spacious than a suitcase and you can throw in your clothes, shoes, wig, laptop, children, and still be left with enough room to throw in a Vitz.
So efficient is the weekend bag that women have carried cookware in them, as evidenced on Facebook by a woman who confessed to carrying a chapati pan in her weekend bag so she could cook chapati for her boyfriend. Clearly, the weekend bag is more than just a bag – it is a house!
But the handbag is also a strange zipped pit, which often swallows items at the exact time you want those items.
The phone was right there two seconds ago when you fetched my handkerchief but you suddenly can’t find it.
You can feel the handbag trembling from the vibration of the ringing phone but you can’t find it. You can hear the ringtone blaring inside the bag but you can’t find it.
You can feel it, you can even see the light from the screen, but still can’t find it. You search more frantically. The call disconnects but you finally find the phone. In a side pocket where you specifically put it so that you could easily take it out it when it rang.
The handbag is certainly helpful for keeping things but it is also a complicated maze where these same things get lost.
Have you seen a woman looking for her keys, which are lost somewhere in the deep unknown of her purse? The annoyed quizzical expression on her face as she rummages through the bag for them?
She can hear them jingling and clinking inside the bag but for the love of God, where? She turns and tilts the bag trying to locate the elusive keys.
She is standing in front of her locked car, house or office door. The keys were right there but they seem to have gone off to an unknown adventure.
She pulls out a few contents from the bag to eliminate the clutter and locate the keys. It doesn’t work.
She removes a few more items to further ease the search. It doesn’t work. Defeated, she turns the bag upside-down and pours everything out of her bag. The keys fall last.
It’s like there are secret passageways inside these bags where items play hide and seek with you when you’d rather not.
The handbag is a dark abyss where things go in, never to be found again until that one day months later when you want to clean the bag.
Here, you might come across a hole in the lining of the handbag, which, as you’ll realise, was serving as a portal to the other dimension.
This was the entry point of those lost items, where they stayed and decayed. The lip balm you accused your sister of stealing. The earring you thought you lost in a night club. The expired, calcified remains of the sweet you were given as change. A forty shilling coin. Crumbs.
Handbags are also a fashion statement and this is made clear on Instagram where, as a rule, the logo of your designer bag should always face the camera.
Need I mention this is also where women keep deadly weapons such as knives, nyahunyo, pepper spray, just in case someone tries to mess with them? Beware!