Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Robes and Coats

For as long as I can remember, I've liked wearing robes and coats. I may not make life decisions based on clothing, but events so far have led me through a series of exciting outfits.

First was probably a Nigerian kaftan and babban riga-- loose, flowing garments that come in all colors and are often decorated around the collar. The kaftan and its accompanying trousers are extremely comfortable, and the pockets are big enough to fit whole loaves of french bread (probably).

I wore a gown at high school graduation and the same is likely to happen at the end of college. This year, however, Oxford traditions require much more frequent academic gown usage. Undergraduate gowns are the least ostentatious, so I suppose the idea is to work your way up through the fancier gowns on the path to your ivory tower.

When it rains, I use a raincoat instead of an umbrella. The idea is that I don't personally mind getting wet; it's just inconvenient if my clothes and pocket contents get rained on. A hoodless raincoat lets me feel the rain on my face while keeping the rest of me relatively dry.

Wearing a lab coat was a long-term goal for me-- my high school science labs had aprons for protection, which was effective but not quite as exciting. Last year, I finally started working in a lab where there are enough hazards around to make lab coats mandatory. I still enjoy walking and working in lab coats, and the biology course I'm doing this year provided each student with a lab coat to keep.

This upcoming winter is the first time in nine years that I'm expecting weeks (or months) of subzero temperatures. To stay toasty, I've acquired a faded blue overcoat. It might be a coincidence, but the first time I wore this coat out shopping was also the first time I was called 'guvnor' by a stranger on the street. In any case, it's certainly warmer than the jacket I've been using until now.

The future may contain more robes, and I'll be happy to take them in stride, ideally resulting in quantities of robe billowing out behind me.

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