Why didn’t anyone tell me that oktober is the wettest month of the year in the Netherlands? Perhaps I should have heeded the signs in college reminding everyone to not forget your paraplu because it rains on average over 70mm this month! Even though I am Irish and very accustomed for it to start ag cur báistí every so often, I am so not prepared for this weather. I don’t own an umbrella. I don’t have a jacket with a hood. I don’t own anything remotely waterproof. I’ve gotten soaked TWICE in the last two days cycling home from town in the regen and I still haven’t purchased anything to keep me dry. I’m taking the Dutch saying ‘you’re not made of sugar, you won’t melt in the rain’ a little too seriously! I made a joke last week about cycling in the rain while holding an umbrella, but it turns out people actually do this.
From what I’ve seen there are 3 types of rain cyclists:
1) The ones who ignore the fact that it’s raining. These are people who have been caught off guard or weather indifferent cyclists. They wipe the water from their eyes at regular intervals with pride, just to make sure they are still heading in the right direction. Sure they’re cold and wet now, but they know their jeans will dry quickly once they reach their destination. A bit of water never hurt nobody!
2) The ones who use umbrellas. These are the people who usually cycle with no hands or who spend their entire journey texting. This way their phone stays dry and they can still send that important message to the friend they are meeting in 10 minutes. Piece of cake.
3) The ones who wear ‘rain suits’. These people are either going somewhere of importance or have learned from past ‘wet’ experiences. They have this rare affliction called common sense. They briefly pull over at the sight of rain, slip on waterproof trousers and/or jacket over their suit and continue on their way reaching their destination bone-dry. They know that preparation is key. Clever clogs!
You can see these 3 types of cyclists in the video below. I think I’m a crossbreed of 1 & 3. Cycling while holding an umbrella when I can’t indicate left for less than half a second is a little too hardcore for me.
The weerbericht says it’s going to be raining all week. It’s no wonder I feel so at home in Utrecht! The good news is there is always a bar or a restaurant nearby to take cover in. Somebody please remind me to buy a waterproof jacket tomorrow.. I don’t pull off the ‘drowned rat’ look nearly as well as I thought!