Sunday, December 12, 2010

Just Bag It!!!

Rudy: “Methinks it's about time to start stockpiling those bread-bags for some sloppy snowy early morning runs”
OrangeMat: “explain, please”

When it gets cold, wet and snowy, [like it’s gonna be soon, I’m sure] I put bread-bags between my sox and my running shoes to keep my tootsies dry = dry feet are happy feet [once they get wet, they NEVER warm back up]. My mom used to do this when I was a kid in CT. Of course, not only did the bread bags keep my feet dry, it ALSO made them easier to slip out of our boots when they were packed in with snow since the buckles on our old-fashioned galoshes or the laces on our “
duck boots” would be glacially impacted with snow and ice. Thankfully, our house back then had something that is a staple in New England architecture which is seldom accommodated in building design down here … A Mud Room.

mud room [or mudroom] is a room which is built into some houses to act as a barrier between outdoors and indoors. Especially in regions with wet, muddy winters, a mud room can be a useful addition as it helps to keep the house clean. In addition, the mud room constitutes a clear boundary between indoors and out, which can be a useful reminder for animals and exuberant members of the household

Typically, a mud room has easily cleaned floors made in materials like tile, concrete, or linoleum. In extreme cases, a mud room may even have a drain in the floor to make sluicing the floor very easy. A well designed mud room also has ample hooks and racks for damp, wet clothing, as well as racks or cubbies for shoes. In addition, benches for people to sit on while they remove their shoes are not uncommon. All of these measures are designed to encourage people to remove sodden or dirty layers before entering the house.

Generally, mud rooms are not the primary entrances of homes, since they tend to be informal in nature. A side or backyard door usually leads into the mud room, and family members may be encouraged to use it while guests are welcomed through the front door. Often, the washer and dryer are also tucked into the mud room, for the sake of convenience. A mud room which doubles as a laundry room is handy, since wet baskets of clothing do not need to be carried through the house to outdoor clotheslines, and soiled or wet clothing can be immediately dumped into a washer without being tracked through the house”

In our house in Connecticut, the order was to walk around behind the house via the walkway next to the garage and come in through the back. There we would de-boot, de-hat and un-snow, [hockey sticks and skates were left outside for the time being] before proceeding to the kitchen for our well-deserved hot chocolate [home-made, mind you; we didn’t discover
Swiss Miss till we moved down here to NJ]

OrangeMat: “Either I don't run early enough or we just don't get that much sloppy wet and cold stuff up here.... but I'll keep it in mind for if and when we (and I) do!”

There has have been a time or two that the bags were TOTALLY necessary due to icy slush, but truth be told … once the streets are dry, I prefer to run in my shorter ankle sox again. There’s something exhilaratingly Badass about finishing a Pre-Dawn Run bundled and gloved, exhaling clouds of your own creation, sweaty steam coming from your active-fleece sweatshirt; then hiking up your sleeves and taking a cool-down stroll while the frosty street-level wind curls around your ankles.

Of course, I also sleep with my foot sticking out of the blanket, even on the coldest nights, so I MAY be sort of a freak in that respect.

NOTE: Yeah I know ... there ARE solutions that you can BUY, like gaiters for outside and waterproof sox for inside ... but what fun is THAT???

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