Journalists’ Bags Ready to Go to Work at Any Moment

Gayane Asryan


This time we’re the ones who’ve violated journalists’ personal space. Local journalists opened their bags and shared their habits, their favorite things and the stories connected to them.

Tirayr Muradyan, Haykakan Zhamanak

Before leaving the house in the morning, I have to double check that everything is in its place in my bag. Besides professional tools, a camera, audio recorder, batteries, storage devices, and so on, I also have lectures and books about law. During the day, I work and study, so my professional materials must always be on hand.

My computer too has long become a must-have item in my bag, since I often write stories and edit video while on the scene, so that I can quickly provide the information.

Currently in my bag are my written queries to the National Security Service (NSS). The NSS obliges journalists to send questions by mail and responds the same way. We lose a lot of time taking a letter to the post office and then getting the answer from the post office. This never ceases to hold me back from wasting a little more time and nerves, in order to get answers to issues of concern.

Ami Chichakyan, Aravot

I bring so many things with me to work that the best option is a backpack, where everything fits. To be honest, I don’t often organize my bag, as it contains everything I need.

My passport is always with me, but not because I use it during the day, but simply because it’s a habit. I don’t leave the house without my passport. Not to waste my time in vain on public transport, I read the daily news and interesting stories on my tablet. I also “roam” social media, interact with my friends.

Often I get home late; there are lights in the pockets of my backpack. This one’s broken; I have to swap it with another one tomorrow. I use the flashlight also when walking my dog.

Hrant Galstian, Hetq

I don’t have a lot of bags, but before buying one, I pay great attention to convenience. Items are organized in a way that without mixing them up, I can very quickly get what I need at a given moment.

Disorder is not for my bag; I don’t have unnecessary items. Depending on the weather — in my bag there might be a raincoat, gloves, or a scarf; in the fall and in the spring, a jacket, so that I don’t get cold going to work and returning home in the evening.

I have chewing gum, paper tissues, and most importantly, a cloth bag. I use it often especially when grocery shopping — I’m against plastic bags, and I want to show others by example that you can easily refrain from plastic bags and adopt the environmentally friendly option. A cloth bag is also more affordable, especially since some stores have recently begun charging for plastic bags.

Gevorg Ghazaryan, Public TV of Armenia

Mine is a strictly work bag, with various necessary photographic equipment. In my case, the most convenient option is a backpack, where I can fit all my stuff.

Every piece of equipment has its place; this helps me to organize my work quickly and lose nothing, so as not to go into unnecessary panic. It’s important that your bag be ready to go to work at any moment. Ready also for force majeure situations.

In this form, my bag is incomplete. If I’m going to photograph a football match, added to all this is also my computer. And I always have gozinaki [Georgian nut brittle] a to quell my hunger. It quickly satisfies you and is high in calories.

Narine Ghalechyan, RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun)

As a rule, I choose spacious bags. I have about 8 backpacks in different colors. I don’t change them often, though their contents may sometimes change; for example, the addition of my daughter’s drawings, her “scribbles.”

I don’t have small bags, those designed especially to accompany evening dress or a classic wardrobe. Recently, I went to a party with my backpack and left it in the cloakroom because I actually don’t wear make-up.

Small bags are not for me, since I leave the house in the morning with the load needed for the workday.

I have everything with me: chewing gum, medication, a lot of pens, business cards, towelettes, and so on. Instead, there are very few girlish accessories: perfume, hand cream, and sunglasses.

I have a lot of candy, which keep stressful and irregular work hours sweet.

Manu Iritsyan, Armenia TV

The profession suggests that the bag must always be large, but in my case it’s the opposite: I prefer small capacity. I have a lot of bags, but this one is my favorite.

I use the same bag for about three months, until because of a change in weather or clothing, I have to move my items into another bag. I don’t like changing bags often, since I always forget important items in the previous bag. That’s why the outside pockets of all my bags have coins, so that I don’t find myself in an awkward situation when taking public transportation.

Though I never freshen my make-up during the day, just as in my bag so too on my work desk I have a few must-have make-up items: perfume, lipstick, lipliner, a mirror.

Most importantly, with me is my favorite earring, which has a seven-year history, whose “other half” I lost at the end of last year at a company party. I don’t lose hope: I’ll find it and I’ll unite them.

Gayane Asryan
Photos by Hagop Hovhannisyan

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