Claire Martin

Brolly Brawling – by Claire


Photo credit: Domo-Domo-kun

I do not own an umbrella!


Most of you right now are laughing at me, some are shocked, and some are simply dumbfounded..

The question is: How can I live on the WET west coast, on the fringe of a rain forest no less, and not own an umbrella?

Here’s my thinking:

  1. I have had bad relationships with umbrellas in the past. I had one beautiful, bright flowery brolly – but it would just not close properly. Right there, always on the bus, always surrounded by my cordial commuting cohorts, who all carefully cloistered their brollies lest they drip on seats etc., right then and there this wretched apparatus would spring open. WHOMPF.


  1. I have owned cheap-ass, poorly constructed umbrellas that simply don’t do the job. They barely cover me, they don’t stay fully open and I look like I’ve got a poorly constructed plastic mini-tent over my head. Not cool!

So – I have yet to find a great umbrella. So I have given up!

Furthermore, umbrella etiquette seems to be missing on the streets of Vancouver.

Please, people – leave the golf umbrella for the golf course.

Also .. I’m “petite” (read: short) so even with a suitably sized umbrella, some maneuvering is going to be necessary on a crowded Georgia Street sidewalk. Taller people (I beg you) please raise your brolly when approaching us littl’ns. As my Granny would say “eyes can be lost with a careless use of knives and brollies”!

Finally – the real reason that I’ve given up on owning a brolly – have you tried texting, or holding a coffee with a brolly in your same hand? It’s impossible!

So I walk the soggy streets of Vancouver in Gortex.

Forgo the brolly.

It’s actually quite liberating!



Pull Up a Chair, Comment -> Here ( 8 Comments In Post )
Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Wendy Vreeken Banham November 24, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    Right on! I’ve always said, a true Vancouverite doesn’t carry a Brolly. First of all, it’s only water; no big deal. Second of all, a hood is way easier to manage. I have lived in Vancouver all of my life and rarely use a brolly. It’s just one more thing to worry about at the office, in a store, on skytrain, etc. I’d much rather wear a hood or a hat.

    • Reply Claire Martin November 26, 2016 at 7:10 am

      Agree, agree! Although I’m not enjoying sitting at work is slightly damp clothes for the first part of the day! Thanks for the comment Wendy.

  • Reply R MacK November 25, 2016 at 6:58 am

    After reading some of the other crappy negative news of the day I found this column humourous and quite uplifting.

    • Reply Claire Martin November 26, 2016 at 7:10 am

      I aim to please! Thanks.

  • Reply Arlene Lewis November 25, 2016 at 2:05 pm

    Lived in the Lower Mainland for 40+ years now and never use my umbrella either….too dangerous and I always lose them anyway

    • Reply Claire Martin November 26, 2016 at 7:12 am

      See – that’s another thing.. “professional brolly loser” should part of my Twitter bio.. so yep, why bother owning one in the first place?! Thanks for the comment Arlene.

  • Reply Lise C November 26, 2016 at 11:40 am

    Oh yes, have lived here most of my life and those golf umbrella’s have to go! And walking downtown, under cover and others are walking at me and their umbrellas are open! There is a reason there is undercover and not undercover, if you want to USE your umbrella, get out from under cover! Let the rest of us in our long raincoats and hoods walk undercover! Silly nig nogs!

    • Reply Claire Martin November 30, 2016 at 7:34 am

      I know what you mean.. good point! Thanks Lise.

    Leave a Reply