The place in Oregon is small -- a 29-foot travel trailer. Think "super efficiency apartment." There aren't a lot of places to stow luggage. As it happens, the one useful shelf is just the right size for the medium bag. But on a longer trip like this one, I would prefer the bigger one. Still, I resolved to fit things into the medium bag if possible.
Boy, there were a lot of things going into this bag. I've been accumulating "things to go to Oregon on the next trip" for a while, and they start to add up. And there's the CPAP machine and the second computer. (Before any of you start: I simply can't carry those and my own laptop backpack and briefcase as well. It's either put them in the checked luggage or don't take them at all, or don't take my own computer, which I need to work while I'm in Oregon.) An (unwrapped as yet) present for my father-in-law. (Lisa's gift was shipped directly to her.) A couple of bags of the good split peas that we haven't been able to find in stores up there. A Doubletree hotel cookie tin full of cashews (taped shut). And so forth. Oh, and a week's worth of clothing, almost as an afterthought, used as packing material around all of the other stuff. (We'll have to do laundry once while I'm in Oregon.)
Finally everything came together. I hefted the bag. Heavy. I took it to the scale, worrying about what I'd do if it was too heavy. 47 pounds, it says. Whew! If I'd taken the larger bag, I would have ended up packing more stuff, and gone over the weight limit.
Even if my home scale runs a little light, the bag probably doesn't weigh more than maybe 51 or 52 pounds, and my experience is that the agents will let you slide a couple of pounds. If they won't, well, I can take the can of cashews out and put it in my computer backpack, and otherwise trim a pound or three.
Material promised to my co-workers before Christmas have been delivered. They usually close the HQ office at 2 PM before a holiday anyway, so I'm about ready to knock off and eat lunch and kill some time until needing to leave to catch the 3:33 train from Centerville.