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Winter Clothes? Yes, Really

April 25th, 2017 · No Comments · Abu Dhabi, France, Long Beach, Olympics, Travel

I’ve never really had winter clothes. Because I always lived in places that either were temperate or Just Plain Hot.

Long Beach, then the Inland Empire, then Abu Dhabi.

But here in Europe, in France, we can go weeks (!) without a single minute in the 60-degree (Fahrenheit) range in December, January, February. Granted, it’s warmer here than in Paris, and the sun tends to shine — even when the air is cool. But it is winter, after all.

And that is when you bring out your winter stuff.

(This is such an exotic concept; I do not think I ever will get used to it.)

You know what bugs me most about winter and clothes?

The time you have to spend getting dressed.

Pulling on a T-shirt and a pair of shorts, which is what you do in southern California, or in the UAE …

That takes about 30 seconds, and you’re ready to go — unless you’re slow at tying shoes.

In places with real winter, you need to budget time to dress.

No, really.

I learned this from covering five Winter Olympics. One coat and a second pair of socks … that’s not enough.

You need a hat or ski cap, and probably a sweater underneath your coat. And a T-shirt below the sweater. And gloves. Gotta have gloves.

And you certainly need a scarf.

I went about four decades without a scarf. I may have needed one, at Sarajevo 1984 or Lillehammer 1994, etc., but I didn’t own one. I had never worn one, they tended not to be on sale in SoCal … and I just struggled around without one.

Now that we have been in France more than a year I have at least three scarves.

I have discovered that keeping your neck warm and keeping cold air from entering your outfit at the Adam’s apple and then sneaking on down your torso … well, it’s a big deal.

A hat, a jacket, a scarf, that’s pretty much the basic stuff in December in France. Even in the south of the country which is, after all, farther north than most of the continental U.S.

And now? Now that it is spring?

We try to decide when it is warm enough to pack our winter clothes and take them down into the garage.

Again. “No. Really.”

It rained overnight, and it will barely crawl out of the 50s today, so the scarves and sweaters and the heavy sweatshirt and sweatpants for sitting on the couch … stay in circulation.

Another couple of weeks maybe, and we safely can strip down to summer wear. Which is year-round-wear from where I lived, till about 16 months ago.



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