It feels a bit churlish to complain about the English weather when Hurricane Sandy has recently destroyed parts of the US, but that won’t stop me.
Every workday I get up, shower, wash and dry my hair. When I leave the house I’m looking reasonable. However, I have a ten minute walk to the tube and then a two minute walk to work at the other end. By the time I arrive at my desk the glossy blow-dry of an hour ago is well and truly a thing of the past.
This is due to 2 things – wind and rain. Even if it’s not properly raining, during the Autumn and Winter months (and often Spring and Summer as well) Londoners have to deal with what a friend of mine calls perma-drizzle. It’s the kind of almost-rain that fills the air with moisture. An umbrella provides no defence against it.
Then there are days when it’s really rainy or windy, or the double whammy (often cheerfully described on the weather forecast as ‘squally’) where a combination of ferocious winds and driving rain leaves me battling with an inside-out umbrella and shouting ‘FFS!’ before I’ve even reached the end of my street.
This causes numerous problems with one’s appearance. I also enjoy being splashed by a truck driving through a puddle. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of wet tights when it’s 2 degrees out.
I only really look good when I arrive at work on a clear, dry day with no breeze. This never happens.
This is why I have brought my straightening irons to work. I get in at 8am so there’s plenty of time for a quick straighten at my desk before the office gets busy. I can’t decide whether this is appalling vanity or pure practicality but I should have done it years ago.
I now have a sleek, glowing bonce that Gwyneth Paltrow would be proud of. It’s wasted on the bozos I work with but at least I feel better.
Colleagues who see the irons cooling on my desk assume that I press them onto the hands of clients who approach me with requests. Such is my reputation in the workplace.