I don’t do umbrellas.
Well, I do… or I have, but it is always a temporary thing.
It seems I can never keep a bumbershoot in my possession.
Who knows how many I have lost, or misplaced, or left behind at unknown points along my journey? I have purchased, been gifted, and found more umbrellas than I dare to count. Many have been abandoned in cabs, coffee shops or cocktail lounges, business meetings, funerals, hotel rooms, or hanging on the coat rack at some soon-forgotten lover’s apartment (I do remember the quick getaway in the pre-dawn hours, only to be reminded by the downpour on the wet tenement steps the moment I got outside).
I will not spend another dollar on something I am sure to lose again, the money far better spent on lottery tickets where there is an even greater chance of a return.
Instead, on those mornings where rain has arrived or is threatening, I choose to don this old reliable Tilley hat that my father gave me some 30 years ago. With an almost umbrella-sized brim (protecting my eyeglasses from errant or evident splish-splash), it is ugly, utilitarian, and utterly useful; with hands-free convenience, it does what it is supposed to do, promises nothing more, and is there when I need it.
I haven’t lost it yet.
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