Rihanna would probably be ashamed of me.
I am almost 27 years old, a married lady, and have managed to raise a child. BUT it turns out I cannot use an umbrella with anything even remotely regarding finesse or skill.
After an apocalyptic downpour this morning, Jim decided umbrellas were essential for the school run. He hasn’t used his since he was two but as long as no-one lost an eye it would be fine.
I was surprised that Jim, as a 4 year old, actually used his how it was intended and not as a sword, javelin or any other form of weapon or dance prop.
However, the logistical problem was me – standing next to him trying to balance bags, keys, school drinks ripping through the velcro of his book bag, the iPad he insists of taking with him in the car, and a dreaded umbrella of my own.
The only reason I have an umbrella at all is because it was hanging in Primark right in my view whilst standing in a particularly long queue. Maybe it would make me into more of an adult, I thought. After all it was clear plastic and had musical notes printed on.
However, the poor thing has not lived a charmed life. It lived in my old car until a year ago and, much like a criminal leaving prison, it left that vehicle bent and scratched from getting stuck in the drivers seat which I like to adjust 47 times a day.
Today could have been this poor umbrellas rebirth. It’s chance, although still slightly wonky, to help me appear put together on the school run.
What am I supposed to do to look like I’ve got this whole thing sussed? I shoved all of our baggage into the back seat, including a child who is on the verge of being a little late. Do I dump my umbrella in the back now and do a quick run, risking looking like I shouldn’t have bothered with the umbrella at all? Or do I struggle to sit in the car and then close the umbrella while half hanging out of the door?
I still don’t know.
I opted for throw, door slam and run. Within the mile drive to school the rain had stopped.
Phew, I’d done it. Mild adulting. Or not.
The apocalypse was back by the time I got home but surely giving it another go, now without child and half the baggage, would be easier.
I’d somehow managed to get the crooked umbrella handle stuck in one of my car storage boxes, thus having to fight with an inanimate piece of plastic and tipping its contents onto the floor – RIP Capri Suns and spare pens.
Hooray, I finally got my umbrella and all my other stuff together. Oh wait, this umbrella is far too effective – unlike good old 90’s umbrellas where everything would soak into the nylon – and every drop of water spilled off the surface and onto my jeans. I actually got more wet from just attempting to use an umbrella.
I thought I would make it. I was finally out of the car, sheltered from the rain, phone and keys slipping around in my wet hands.
Until the wind came.
I made it to my front door, via a busy road and a workman taking up most of the pavement to avoid me and my wonky umbrella coming towards him, looking like I had been dragged through a hedge. A bigger hedge than usual.
My hair was actually attached to one of the spikes of the umbrella. We were now one giant mess of a conjoined twin.
The poor thing is now abandoned in the hallway, the sun has come out (the cheek of it), and I have solidified my place in life as being next to that of a 12-year-old boy in the elegant feminine stakes.
My tomboy self will be putting her hood up from now on, or just enjoying an outdoor shower. Umbrellas are not for me.