LESLEY KEATING: Apparently I’ve been pulling my suitcases along all wrong

Lesley cannot see the problem with teenage girls wearing make-up                                                             Picture: PA
Lesley cannot see the problem with teenage girls wearing make-up Picture: PA
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After many exciting adventures, my trusty grey Tripp suitcase finally met its Waterloo via baggage handlers on route back from Antigua.

Now the only way it can be opened is to put a pen through the one remaining zip pull.

It was time for a new one.

Encouraged by the fact that there was a sale in Debenhams, I trotted off to town and found a bewildering array of suitcases in every colour and size.

That was my first mistake.

Now, this may be a woman thing, but I couldn’t just walk in, pick one and head for the checkout.

Oh no, that was far too easy.

I wanted to look inside, trundle them around the sales floor to test their moves – and don’t even get me started on colour choices.

Why are there so many options? None of this was making it easy for me.

I was soon targeted by a mature sales assistant who could only be described as a suitcase geek.

What she didn’t know about them wasn’t worth knowing – and in my case, wasn’t actually of interest.

But she certainly wasn’t going to let me go without a lecture.

I was test-driving a very large, stylish white one when she loudly proclaimed I was doing it all wrong.

Excuse me? I think I know how to pull a suitcase. But apparently, not.

If you have one with four wheels, they are supposed to glide alongside you.

Two wheels and you can pull them behind you.

Well, I liked the four-wheel model and I also happen to like pulling them behind me so I was prepared to take my chances on what she said would ‘compromise the handle’.

I actually got a bit carried away and bought not one but two and left with the words ‘compromising the handle’ ringing in my ears.

I hadn’t really thought it through though.

Trust me when I say there is no fun quite like trying to stuff two sizeable suitcases into the back seat of a convertible to drive home.

I’m pretty sure I compromised more than just the handle in doing so.


Does anyone else think the potential intro duction of driverless - lorries on our motorways is bonkers?

I can’t even begin to list all the ways this is crazy. But, as a starting point, what about negotiating traffic lights when the lead convoy

vehicle – manned by a ‘real person’ – passes through a green light leaving the automated others to negotiate the amber or even the red?

In my experience, many lorries drive badly enough when they are manned, let alone unmanned.

I was once hit on the motorway by one which may just as well not have been manned. And what about third party errors?

The insurance companies will have a field day with any accidents and confusing discrepancies.


It’s amusing that Radio 4’s Justin Webb is baffled by his 17-year-old daughter Martha’s ‘obsession’ with make-up, which he blames on the relatively new phenomenon of YouTube vloggers.

He also blames himself for not making a stand against it earlier and spouts feminism and disapproval about why she feels the need to gain approval this way.

Hello! She’s a normal 17-year-old girl.

This is not a new phenomenon. I was poring over library books on make-up back in the 1970s when my best friend and I regularly blew our weekly pocket-money on make-up.

We were a good few years younger than Martha too. As Martha nicely puts it, ‘I don’t care what people think of me, I care what I think of myself.’