The Cottage Smallholder

stumbling self sufficiency in a small space

Christmas hat


Cucumbers in the greenhouse last summer

Cucumbers in the greenhouse last summer

Today I finally chose my Christmas present from Danny. It’s been weeks of Internet surfing procrastination. Rather fun too. I’ve moved from secateurs to gardening gloves. Books to wellies. Root trainers to cloches. I’ve had garden cloches before – very handy but not very personal – I did ask for them so it wasn’t really like being given a new vacuum cleaner. But this year I was determined to find something that was a bit more personal.

Over the last 18 months or so since I’ve been off work my hair has thinned considerably. It used to be thick and curly now perhaps as revenge for not guzzling my greens all my life it has become thin and straight. I had it cut quite short last week hoping that it would curl again. No such luck. It’s now short, thin and straight. More ostrich than poodle.
“Do you think that I’m going bald?”
“Well it was much thicker when I first met you…”
“Thin hair means that my head feels so cold.”
“A hat could do the trick.”
So all those old women with beards that I spotted as a child, the ones who were wearing hats indoors, clearly had a thinning hair problem. I’d assumed that they just liked wearing hats.

Delighted to report that I haven’t got a beard just yet.

Working in the vegetable patch this afternoon, in a damp drizzly mist I suddenly realised that what I needed and wanted was a Hat with a Brim. I have several woolly hats but they soon get wet and who except a deranged person wants to wear soaking wet headgear? Apart from that, the water settles on your face too. A brim would be the answer. That’s why all the pro gardeners that I know wear hats with a brim. Duuuh

Late this afternoon Danny suggested a grapevine might be a good present. I found this one. This grape is the same variety as the one that Capability Brown planted in the glasshouses at Hampton Court Palace and is still alive and thriving today. If ours lasts this long, we will be long underground. Beards and all.

The vine was a good price but the postage from Crocus is £5.99 so if I shop there I tend to look for something else to spread this postal burden. Isn’t it odd that postage up to £3.99 is fine but £5.99 seems excessive? I don’t have gardening clothes per se, just my own clothes, which are a bit ancient and much loved for all that. But I do like searching through the “rails” of gardening clothes on offer from gardening websites.

Then I spotted this hat . Durable, and the hat’s appearance improves with age. A brim. A winter and summer hat. I quickly measured my crown – medium size – a surprise as with little hair I was beginning to feel a bit like Beaker from The Muppets. I pressed the order button and hopefully this natty piece of headgear will be arriving very soon along with the vine.

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  1. Hi Fiona – I hope your hat has now arrived – the reinforced ‘breathing’ holes in the side (clearly portrayed in the picture) will stop your head getting too warm – The Hubby & I have similar Aussie hats and they are FABULOUS for dogwalking in snow, hail, sleet, pouring rain, drizzle, etc – a chinstrap (I call it a ‘thong’) is brilliant in any windy conditions – I wish you very very many years of enjoyment.

  2. Hi, just wanted to say that my hat(s) arrived today (the bloke has to wait til 14th for his!) I wore it all today in the rain & mizzle & can confirm that it is a) comfortable & b) waterproof. Good Call 🙂

  3. An akubra, classic!

  4. What a perfectly brilliant hat, not only for gardening, but also for when I take the ankle biter to the stables where there are two sorts of weather : either arctic rain or saharan sun (ok I exaggerate) but as I ordered one for myself my husband came in from the garden, lent over my shoulder to see why I was clutching the credit card and requested that I get him one at the same time!!

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