Birthday presents from other half: an overdress/apron to wear with my newish medievaloid clothes (I already had an apron that I like a lot, but it’s far too short to keep cooking stains off my ankle-length skirts), as well as something to wear on my head. Three somethings, in fact: two little cotton caps, one green and one unbleached-natural, and a velvet beret that shouts RED!! [ETA: had to remove all the links because aloria.de doesn’t have any of these any more.]
I put on the green cap the moment I’d got it out of the box. I want to wear it around the house (does that make me a Headcovering Christian?) but probably won’t wear it in public until the Dickens festival, when I’ll go to the market in it to confuse the tourists. I may wear it, or the off-white one, to church occasionally; people are now used to my headscarf, after all, so they probably won’t even notice the different thing on my head.
Then the doorbell rang and I took the cap off because I didn’t want to look strange to delivery people, but it was Prima coming to celebrate the after-feast of my birthday, a bit earlier than I expected. I promptly showed her the beret that shouts RED! and she said “I’m not going to say anything about that”– clear disapproval. Then, upstairs, I put the green cap back on and she said “That one’s even worse!” so I took it off (with a scowl, I admit) because I’m an inveterate conflict avoider.
But anyway. I like wearing something on my head. It makes me feel at ease, perhaps safe, complete. I don’t do it to show submission to anyone, not even God, but only out of preference, like wearing skirts rather than trousers or wearing my hair long rather than short. I do like short hair on women –like the awesome Roman Holiday haircut Secunda recently came home from the hairdresser with– just not on me.
I went shopping with the beret on, fully realising that it probably makes me look like a member of the Red Hat Society (1) because all my coats are purple and I’m that age (2). Also, it’s carnaval and people might just have taken it for fancy dress. No comments, except from a girl of about six who I complimented on her blue princess dress (“Wow, you look pretty!” “You look pretty, too!”).
(1) A friend commented “Only if it doesn’t suit you”. I think it does, though more people than Prima may disagree.
(2) I’m now at an age that I can be an old woman if I like, and don’t have to be one when I don’t want to. Very comfortable. Also, until the twins’ nineteenth birthday in September, my age is exactly the sum of my daughters’ ages. This will never happen again.