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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Perfect Shoes and Hat -- Kiki Clark

I think every state has that saying: “If you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes.” Well… maybe every state but Hawaii. Regardless, I defy other states to say it fits them better than Colorado, where we can have sun and 70 degrees, hail, and snow on the same day. Last Thursday, I think it was.

Even so, Coloradans are determined to get outside whenever we can, which means our closets are full of everything we need to deal with sartorial uncertainty: hats for sun, hats with strings for the notorious Chinook winds, crushable wool hats for snow, light coats, heavy coats, sweaters to go under a light coat when a heavy coat is too much, and every shoe permutation from flip-flops to ski boots. When relatives call and ask what they should pack for a visit, every Coloradan says the same thing. “Layer.”

Having lived here for about 20 years, matching clothes to climate has become a personal challenge – a chance to shout semper paratus (Always Prepared) and laugh at the sky on days of spitting rain and driving winds (though I rarely do that, because I hate having water spots on my glasses).

This summer, my husband and I are going to Greece with other members of our community chorus, which means I must reconcile my tendency to bring something for every contingency with the amount of luggage I want to schlep.

We’ll be cruising through the islands for part of the trip, which means dressy sandals are a must. But dressy sandals aren’t good for long days of sightseeing, and tennis shoes aren’t good when your sightseeing ends at the beach, and flip flops don’t have enough arch support for the walking that goes before the beach. Therefore, I will also pack my Keens.

Keens are a hybrid of sandal and sneaker, and are waterproof to boot. Of course, this kind of high-tech, function-before-fashion shoe will mark me as an American, but somehow I think hanging out with 40 pasty folks all absentmindedly humming Shenandoah will do that as well. If anti-American riots break out, I don’t have to run faster than everyone – just the sopranos.

The other end of my body requires protection as well. Summer in Greece will be hot. We’ll trudge down ancient stone roads, looking for shade among baking stone ruins. Unfortunately, straw hats do not pack well, and crushable wool is too hot. I’ll buy a straw hat there, which will bring my number of chapeaus up to something like 30 if it makes it back in one piece. Eh. They stack.

There is this to be said for traveling to Greece during the summer. At least I won’t leave town in a driving blizzard, only to have to drag a bulky coat through Athens. Been there, done that and own the T-shirt, which is what you layer under a wool sweater in October when the day has been warm but the temperature plummets 20 degrees after the sun drops behind the mountains.

Don’t miss Ten Tips for Packing a Suitcase,
in this month’s Wet Noodle Posse Ezine.


At 5:22 PM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

And in case you're wondering, most of the sopranos could outrun me. That's just one alto's mild-mannered joke at the expense of my lovely compatriots.

At 8:45 AM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

LOL, Esri. You're going to Greece! Lucky you! I hope you have a wonderful time. Those shoes are crazy and cool and they look great for traveling. I've never seen those before. I have also never been to Colorado, but I hear it's beautiful. Where did you live before Colorado?

At 11:42 AM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

Theresa, for a brief 9 months, my first husband's job landed me in Garden City, Kansas. Before that, my family went back and forth between Missouri (St. Louis suburbs) and Florida (east coast). Not that we were snowbirds. More like, "We've been in Florida a while now. Wasn't Missouri better?"

At 11:43 AM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

One of my Chorale friends says she went to Hawaii on June 4th one year -- leaving Colorado in a snowstorm.

I'm sorry, but we RULE in unpredictable weather.

At 5:48 PM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

Wow, a June 4th snow storm. Now that's crazy!

Kansas and Missouri and Florida. You do get around! I've been to Florida, but I really do need to get out and see some of the states.

At 1:16 PM, Blogger Trish Milburn said...

Ah, Greece -- you'll have a fabulous time, I'm sure. I've never been there, but the pictures are gorgeous.

When I visited Yellowstone National Park a few years ago in early June, when we drove over the Continental Divide, the snow on the sides of the road were still piled up as high as the top of the minivan, though it was melting at the bottom. And it was spitting snow at one point.

At 10:10 AM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

Impressive, Trish. I guess anyplace with fairly high mountains is going to have some freaky weather.


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