This morning it was raining as I walked to the library. I had my navy blue fleece hat AKA Cozy Cozy pulled down over my ears. I felt so grateful for its warmth.
When I got to the library, I removed the books from my knapsack. I noticed my sunhat lounged at the bottom, but not Cozy Cozy. I figured I had put it in my knapsack’s front zippered pocket.
Later, when it was time to go, it was not there. I took all my books out of the main compartment, peering down: no hat. Nor was it stuffed in a jacket pocket. It also wasn’t on my head (once, when I thought my hat was missing, I found it on my head). I retraced my steps–into the B aisle of Fiction, upstairs to the magazine collection, the elevator. I checked two Lost & Founds and even conferred with the Security Guard, who thought it must have fallen out of my pocket into the waiting hands of a Hat Thief.
The world seemed gray as I trudged home.
In theory, I felt grateful I hadn’t lost my identity, but my attachment to Cozy Cozy is such that I felt like I had lost my identity.
To top it off, the hat store, where I had purchased my beloved hat, was out of fleece hats.
I called Inspector Fondue, who was out and about and said he’d investigate. He said he’d look with his long binoculars that make his eyes big as a wide-eyed frog’s. He reported he had looked to the left, to the right, sideways, forward, and behind: no hat.
I took a deep breath and made an attempt to move forward. I found it hard to concentrate on anything except the Hat Attack.
I Googled “fleece hats,” and saw photos with prices ranging from $20 -$350. That was not right. Next I Googled “fleece beanies,” though I felt weird doing so; I tend to think of beanies as caps with propellers on top, but in the hat world, the hat I wear is actually a beanie.
I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw that a certain clothing co-op carried turtle fur beanies. Turtle fur was the first kind of fleece hat I bought in ’94 and that hat was my #1 favorite, until its mysterious disappearance eleven years later.
I ordered two for the price of one (they’ll keep each other company).
Then it was time to pay. And I, who have numbers galore memorized, messed up my credit card info. I told the customer service rep. it was because I had Post-Traumatic Hat Syndrome.