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Hold on to your hats

When I went off to college, I didn’t own a winter coat. Why would I? I was born and raised in Miami. So in the fall of my freshman year at American University, I had to buy a winter coat. My parents were out of the country when a couple of my dorm mates[Sue and Melissa] took me shopping at Lord & Taylor. I bought a BEAUTIFUL black wool coat that came almost to the ankles. It cost a small fortune. My father had a coronary when he got the American Express bill the next month. The same day I bought that coat, we went to Georgetown to eat at Stromboli’s and have Thomas Sweets. I bought a black, wool hat at a haberdashers in Georgetown. I bought this hat.

Today, the weather turned cooler and as I headed out to Gator Growl, I grabbed my hat from the bin in the top of my closet that contains my gloves and scarves. I rarely have a chance to wear this hat. I also think I look kinda goofy in a hat, but predictions were for temperatures in the low 50s with a brisk wind. Sitting outside in the University of Florida football stadium for the concert demanded proper attire. I was quite comfy in my new Talbots coat and my old Georgetown hat. After the concert, we headed to one of the few places serving after 11PM: Steak-n-Shake. While the burgers were decent, the service sucked and halfway home I realized I had lost my hat. I was certain I had removed it before entering the restaurant, but it wasn’t in the car.

I was really upset. While it is ‘just a hat’, it is a hat I have owned for 25 years. So, I drove back to the restaurant to confirm what I was 99.9% certain about, that I did not wear the hat into the restaurant and therefore could not have left it in a booth. Mind you, it was now past 12 midnight and I had embarked on a likely futile endeavor. But, I was compelled to at least try to find my hat.

I find it on the ground, in the parking lot, right next to where my car door must have opened. I had dropped it when I got out of the car. And now, I have it back. And instead of returning the hat to the storage bin in my closet, I intend to wear it regularly. While it is a precious thing I treasure, it is a simple (if not stylish) hat that should be used not boxed up and stored away.

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