Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Cape Ann Sou'Wester

When I bought this hat from Lee Valley Tools (no, I don't work for them) a few years ago, I imagined I'd need it for those times when I gardened out on my deck in raw rainy weather – harvesting spinach in March, or the last of the mesclun lettuce in October, that sort of thing. As it turns out, it's a terribly useful garment on a day like this one, as a Nor'Easter sweeps through New York City. I have buckets strategically placed around the apartment, and downgraded my expectations for the survival of items in the basement. But nothing made me feel better about facing the weather than strapping on my Cape Ann Sou'Wester. With this hat, and the rest of me wrapped in a good sturdy wool scarf and trench coat and boots I don't really care about any more, I didn't need an umbrella. I marched out into the rain and made the two long blocks to the subway without incident – the chinstrap kept the Sou'Wester on, the flannel lining stayed snug and dry, and it didn't really matter that my face got a little wet. This hat kept the misery of wet windy foul weather at bay. I know that when I wear it I am going to get either envious looks or some wisecrack about the Gorton's Fisherman.

As the weather keeps getting more fickle and the seas rise around New York City, I wonder – should I invest in some waders? Perhaps that inflatable one-person evacuation boat I bought after 9/11 isn't such a bad idea after all...

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