Jenyfer Matthews
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May 19th, 2014
An Old Friend

When my husband accepted his first job abroad I was thrown for a loop – I had never been out of the country and didn’t even have a passport. But I decided that it was an opportunity worth giving a chance and so I did what was necessary to make it happen. Part of that was going shopping and one of the things I bought was a sun hat because we were moving to the desert and all explorers have a sun hat after all. I quite clearly remember that I got my hat at JCPenney and paid about $30 in 1999 which was a bit of a splurge for us at the time but it was crushable straw.

That may have been the best $30 I ever spent.

I still have that hat and have since worn it all over the place – some of them pre-digital camera even! Here I am wearing my hat in India:


And then in Thailand:


And again in Oman:


I also wore it in Cambodia, where it not only protected me from the sun but also from sudden deluges of bat pee inside Ankor Wat temple:

hat 4

And of course I wore the hat all over Egypt:

ValleyKings04 (3)

But just because I’m not abroad anymore doesn’t mean I’m not still using my hat. I wore it to a soccer tournament last weekend – much to my daughter’s dismay – and my son decorated it for me:

hat 5

I think I got my money’s worth – and it is still going strong!

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4 comments to “An Old Friend”

  1. 1

    I want a hat like that!!! I’ve never heard of crushable straw. Is it also ‘washable’?

  2. 2

    I wish I could remember the name of the weaving technique / straw type because it does have a name – maybe raffia? It has been packed in my suitcase many times and used as a nest for more breakable objects and has never been hurt.

    It is washable though I haven’t washed it often. I did have to wash it after the bat peed on my head however! I just set it in the sun to dry after and it was fine.

  3. 3

    What a great post – and your son did an amazing job decorating your old friend. And how did you manage to stay the same age through the passage of time??? Bat pee? :)

  4. 4

    I may have stayed about the same shape (give or take a few or ten pounds), but I assure you my face has aged plenty!