Sunday, 18 May 2008

Leader of the pac-a-mac

In preparation for my recent expedition to Scotland, I decided to do something I've never done before, something I've always been a little bit scared of. Yet somehow, in my mid 30s, it seemed to be the right time to take the step.

I bought a cagoule.

It is black – classic, understated. It fits in a mesh pouch that is slightly bigger than a box of Nairn's Oatcakes. It opens properly, all the way down, rather than with a tiny neck cavity which demands you have a diploma in escapology to put it on or take it off. It is, the man in the Lewisham branch of Millets was quick to ensure me, 'breathable', which is a boon if you enjoy breathing, as I very much do. The label is 'Regatta', which seems to me to denote a level of sophistication above and beyond the Peter Storms of the waterproof world. I feel strongly that I am wearing the Gucci of cagoules – tailored, timeless, elegant.

There is little more say, apart from that I already feel a level of fondness for it that has surprised me. It's a little early to use the L word – but who knows what depths of emotion may reveal themselves during the storms we are destined to share. And I like myself as a cagoule-wearer. I feel responsible. I have purpose. I have really useful pockets. I feel as though it's only a matter of time before I know every flavour of Cup-A-Soup. Unfortunately you cannot sidle up behind someone quietly to steal, say, a particularly enticing item from their picnic. Rustling is an issue. This is a tiny drawback, since I believe cagoule-wearers are mostly honest. But if anyone was brilliant enough to invent the stealth cagoule, well… I would bake that person a cake.

So these days, I am emphatically PC (pro-cagoule), and contemplating a one-woman mission to bring the waterproof to the fashion forefront. Celebrities! Join me! I've already done some of the styling for you. Presenting…

The Carrie Bradshaw:

The Betty Suarez:

The Victoria Beckham:

My own pac-a-mac diffusion range for Topshop can only be weeks away…

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