On Traveling Light

It was my second day in Puerto Vallarta. I came down to the pool in the afternoon and saw one of the travel writers from my group stepping out of the water--an older woman who also lives in New York. She waved me over to a lounge chair next to hers. 

"Is your name 'Barbie' or 'Bobbi'?" I asked, unfolding my towel, "I've heard people call you both."

She shook her head, "It's neither. It's 'Babbie.' B-A-B-B-I-E. And it's not a nickname–it's my actual name."

We ordered Sauvignon Blanc and shared a bowl of ceviche with tortilla chips. At one point, Babbie asked me what I was wearing to dinner later that evening. I told her that I hadn't thought about it yet, and that I might just wear the same polo dress that I had worn the night before. "I didn't pack much. I'm the kind of girl who doesn't mind wearing the same dress over and over again," I said, "I think it's the sign of a good dress."

She nodded her head in approval, "You may have packed lighter than I did! I have a story about that. I met Bianca Jagger in Acapulco ages ago. This was before she met Mick. She was being kept by a man who owned a very famous hotel there. She had this black dress. You could tell it was $3,000 and from Paris, like Givenchy or Yves Saint Laurent. Someone must've bought it for her. Anyway, she would wear this dress every single night, and she looked so chic. I couldn't tell you the words we exchanged to each other...But I've always remembered what she wore."