Suddenly it was a mad scramble. Where only a couple days ago everyone thought they had another three months to prepare for the trip to a new world, now UN authorities had gotten wind of the trip and were rounding up colonists.
Robert James Hamilton, President of StelCo and financier of the trip to Alchibah sent out a desperate email:
I am sorry to have to suddenly change our schedule but it seems the UN has gotten whif of our plans. Already they have rounded up several of you.
There is no time to lose. Drop everything. Forget everything. You must immediately pack and get yourself to the Hilton Orbital Resort. I’ve made reservations for you so your personal craft will be allowed docking space. Your cover is that you are going on a one week planetary tour aboard the Lancer Cruise Ship. In reality, that ship is owned by StelCo. It leaves for Titan Dry Dock tomorrow afternoon. That’s only 12 hours from now.
While the Mayflower itself is able to hold almost unlimited cargo, the Lancer isn’t. You are limited to one large suitcase and one small carry-on bag. I’m sorry about that but there simply isn’t time to make other arrangements. As it is, the Mayflower is not nearly complete in the stores and provisions I had hoped to bring along. Make sure you have several changes of clothing, sturdy boots, and a warm jacket.
We will all meet at the Mayflower in a couple days. Until then, good luck, best wishes and hopes.
It will be interesting to see what choices the colonists made in attempting to compress their entire life, and their hopes for what will be needed on the new world, into one suitcase. As for myself, I brought along paperback editions of a few of the books of last century’s Robert A. Heinlein. That, and an electric chainsaw. Can’t build a home if you can’t fell the trees…