Confession time: I use an umbrella.
That may not seem like such a big deal, but I was born and raised in the Seattle area. I’m an “Emerald City Native” as it were. Here, there is a culture of not using an umbrella when it rains. And, it’s always raining. You tough it out or you wear a waterproof coat with a hood. But, umbrellas?! Pshaw! Only tourists use umbrellas!
Well, tourists and I.
I started using umbrellas in college. I hated it when the rain soaked through my backpack as I trudged across campus. Because I had two very different majors in two very different departments, I was taking classes on the opposite sides of a very large campus – so there were many opportunities for my not-Northwest-rain-rated book bag to get sopping wet. Also… I’m shorter, so I was that girl who poked everyone in the eyes with the ribs of my umbrellas. That was just a bonus, though. I swear.
Suddenly, I realized that I didn’t always have to have a waterproof parka with a hood. And, my glasses weren’t all covered in water drops and I could see!
It was a revelation!
So, I started buying coats that were wool and/or didn’t have hoods. What a concept! And, I started carrying an umbrella.
I won’t use my umbrella if it’s just sprinkling or even lightly raining (I am a Seattleite, after all – represent!), but I will use it when it’s pouring.
And, sometimes the locals trash talk my umbrella because, clearly, I’m not from the area.
Then I just “accidentally” make sure my umbrella is at eye-level threat range. And, miraculously, my umbrella is no longer a problem.
So I say, “Let it rain.”
Tell me about your part of the world and its weird cultural quirks in the comments!