Ode to a traveling companion


I’ve done a fair bit of travelling over the past 14 years (how am I even old enough to write that?) but whether I’ve been solo, on a tour, with friends or family I’ve had one consistent companion everywhere I’ve been.

My hat.

Finding it on my first trip to Queensland’s Gold Coast was monumental. I’d never wear hats because I’m a moron who ignores sun safety ads (see below). Why would I? I only have black hair that acts as a heat magnet. Also they made me look like a little kid engulfed in her dad’s baseball cap. Complete with stick-out ears.

Cancer Council Victoria
Let’s say it was 2002  (because who remembers these things?) and I was on a uni break up the coast with friends. We were hitting the beaches and theme parks so of course the first thing Cristina and I did was go shopping. And there, in the Roxy Shop (how very Strayan), was THE HAT. It didn’t swamp my head, the brim didn’t stick out a mile and it basically made my head look normal.
Since then we’ve been everywhere together. To Europe, around Australia, on hikes, camping trips sightseeing tours, up mountains, down valleys, into tiny towns where they make delicious strudel, and onto the two best beachy places in the world – The French Riveria and Maui.
It’s seen things. Some of those things no hat should ever catch a glimpse of, namely the top of Hunter S. Thompson’s head (but that’s another story).

But it’s getting pretty ratty. The clip on the back doesn’t catch properly anymore so I’m forever trying to tighten it. It’s sun-faded so it’s not black anymore so much as it is a faded non-colour. I wore it on a run recently and now it’s covered in gross salt stains from sweat. It deserves better.

Tombstone Generator
It’s time to say goodbye. But how do you farewell such a steadfast and, let’s face it, beautiful companion? I can’t just throw it out. It’s in the same category as the pair of joggers that helped me train for my first half marathon. Those went to Shoes for Planet Earth and are hopefully being used by someone else who loves them. You can’t re-gift a hat though.

RIP Hatty.

P.S. Anyone know where I can get exactly the same hat?

6 thoughts on “Ode to a traveling companion

  1. I feel your pain. I am not a hat person either – even with the whole sun thing, I just feel like a doofus with a hat on BUT I did used to have a cricket hat. It was the most comfortable hat I had ever tried on (and it was A's – but, details schmetails). It travelled through the US with us in 1996. It was lovely – it didn't have a stiff brim, it was soft and floppy and soooooooooo comfy. About three or four years ago I had a high pony tail and I pulled it on but it was so threadbare in the crown from sweat and sun, I pulled a hole into the crown. I was devastated. I wore it for another couple of years with the hole in the top because hey, the brim still kept the sun off my face and neck, but when we moved, it didn't move with us. I put it in the place where all broken hats go – the bin !! I was sad. I felt like I should have given it a better send off. I felt like I should have looked after it better. Then A reminded me it was over 30yrs old and so it had had a good innings (pun totally intended !!! LOL) I think I have about 5 hats at home, on the hat rack, I hate them all – they are not my old faithful and so now I very seldom wear a hat because I can't find 'the one' !!! I have tried cricket supply shops – none of them have the nice floppy brim that he had.
    Have you tried asking Roxy if they still make that particular style ? I hope you 'find what you are looking for' courtesy of U2 !!! LOL

  2. I am not a hat person but even less a cap person. I have a BIG head. However, as a teacher we "had" to wear hats on playground duty so I got something to fit the bill. I reckon if you kept this hat and used a pic of it, then there'd be someone/somewhere with one..ebay? gumtree? whatever you think might get you one like it. I understand letting something go like this. I had to do it with my pillow I had since childhood. I carted it around for around 50 years before it fell apart. Literally.

  3. It is actually a thing and not just my imagination! Some people just look goofy no matter what hat they wear! I was one of them until I found my hat. I can totally picture you in A's cricket hat though. And they are pretty good,e specially for sun protection. LOL, I take your suggestion on notice: the hat will eventually make its way to the bin. In its own good time.
    So I found a replacement on the internet that's not exactly the same but I'm hoping that it won't look too bad. The only problem is there are about five colours to choose from and I'm BAAAD at colour coordination AND making decisions.

  4. Haha Denyse, I have an oddly-shaped head. It's the same with sunglasses and glasses. They look strange on my face unless I find the one perfectly proportioned pair.
    So I have found a similar hat online. I have to wait for my savings to expand a bit before I buy it, which is perfect because I can't decide on the colour.

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