But it was raining. And the kid and I were completely devoid of rain gear.
I cursed myself a little bit for never remembering to check the weather. Then I decided to wimp out, go buy an umbrella (new, not even a used umbrella), and walk to daycare. Then I could walk the stroller home (as opposed to strapping it to the bike). Since the stroller comes with a rain cover, I wouldn’t be subjected to any I’m-wet-and-its-the-end-of-the-world hysteria. My daughter and I would stay dry.
But being a procrastinator, I didn’t ever leave to buy the umbrella and instead found myself needing to get to daycare as fast as possible, which means using the bike. But what to do about the water-phobic tot? I decided to go for the tried and true plastic-garbage-bag method. It works for keeping my computer dry in my backpack when it rains, so why not the kid?
I took a plastic bag, poked a hole in the top, put the bag over my daughter H, put her helmet on and put her in the bike seat like a little burrito. I didn’t even pull her arms out. I poked a couple more holes in the bag so that I could thread the straps through, and I was done. Before I put her on the bike, H had noticed a worm on the sidewalk and we talked about how worms like the rain. So as I was getting her settled in, I told her that she was a worm and that she liked the rain too. She told me her shoes were getting wet, but she never really complained about that or the fact that her arms were pinned down. She was a trooper. I got absolutely soaked, but H only got her pants a little wet.
Once I got home, I thought about how embarrassing it is to claim to be a big biker with kids and not to have rain gear for myself or the toddler. OK, I do have that big blue poncho, but it only works if I remember to bring it with me. Where can we get pint-sized raingear (and can we get it used)? Can I rig up a bike-seat cover so that H never gets wet as I’m sure I should? I felt guilty for a while, and then Dorea and I decided that we should just embrace the plastic bag method.
So my new goal is to get a handful of cheap plastic garbage bags and some rubber bands (for securing bags to shoes and whatnot) and stash them in the Xtracycle (along with my poncho). If it’s raining when we are on the way somewhere, I can throw in a change of clothes. If it’s raining on the way home, we can just strip when we get home and get into dry things. Then I’ll look for a time to try out the line that my parents used with me when I complained about the rain, “You’re not made of sugar — you won’t melt.”
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