We’re finally getting a break from the torrent of rain, and it occurred to me I never once used an umbrella. Maybe one more thing we don’t need in retirement? As I see it, there are several options:
- Stay home. This is the luxury of retirement. Crappy weather? Oopsie, I’m innie. If you have a television and stock a treasure trove of food, libations, puzzles and books, you should be fine riding out the storm. The cat and I like to play, “Stuck in a frozen cabin in the woods.”
- Retirement-proof your hair. The reason many women avoid the rain is about hair or shoes. It seems to me most men don’t bother with umbrellas. It’s time to get over the hype your hair must be fixed, full, smooth and perfect. Let it go wild. My longish hair actually looks better with a little rain on it. Sort of the poor man’s French girl hair.
- Dump the good shoes. In one of my last dressy work-related events before I retired, I wore silver Birkenstock sandals. In hindsight, I can see it was my way of saying, guess what? I’m retiring! These days, I have Merrell boots for big rain involving puddles. For modest sprinkles, Keen sandals (with or without socks) or just athletic shoes. Nothing bad will happen to them.
- Wear a hat. Hats and dark glasses are God’s way of saying you look marvelous. No makeup required. No need to fix your hair. Just plop and go. Add sunglasses or tinted lenses for extra protection from critical observers. A brim keeps the rain off your glasses.
- Get a raincoat. Or two. My fave is a real Scottish Mackintosh I bought when I still had cash flow. Coupled with a black Tilley hat, Dale says I look menacing. I also have a short rain jacket for sports and a knee-length Marmot for putzing around. Hoods are handy, depending on what type of hat you select. Big pockets are essential.
- Ditch the handbag. That’s what pockets are for. Possible exceptions include an all-weather crossbody bag or my old favorite … the backpack purse! Coming back to a neighborhood near you soon.
Umbrellas are relatively cheap, so this isn’t a huge money saver, but it’s another foot forward on the minimalist path. The real pain of umbrellas is what to do with them when you arrive at your destination. Or how to carry one when you have other stuff to carry on the way to your destination.
Hands-free is better than dragging around an umbrella. Plus, you can run faster when the bad shit goes down.
As for the image above, I’ve been having fun with the free Android app Sketch Photo.