In my case, the answer should be yes. Always. Unfortunately, so often it's no. Because apparently I never learn.
Just over a year ago, my car went off the road into a ditch as I was driving home. Long story short, I was in my pyjamas, the zipper on my jacket broke, and my 3 year old wasn't wearing shoes. It was -20 outside, I had to walk home, and there was snow. I should have worn pants. My neighbour who towed me out of the ditch probably also thought I clinically insane. (Read the whole saga here)
Fast forward to the present.
We have snow, but it has rained more than average for the season. Overnight, the rain freezes, and turns the road into an ice rink. On the day in question, my husband texted me in the morning to let me know the roads were slippery. I should have put on pants to take the kids to school. I did not.
In my hubris, I threw a jacket on over my pyjamas, put on some boots that I now realize look very much like slippers, and I drove the kids to the bus stop about 4 kms from our house. I had zero problems.
Academically I knew it was icy. I could see the sheen. But my vehicle with it's 4 wheel drive and studded tires handled it like a champ. Rocky music was playing in the background.
Like a normal, sleep deprived parent, I waited in my car with the kids at the bus stop. No one besides the kids needed to witness my state of makeup-free undress, and frankly they're pretty used to me in pyjama pants. Honestly, why wear anything else if you don't have to.
That said, I do have a bar. I believe that if you have to go out into the world and interact with other functioning adults, you should be wearing pants. Dropping kids at a bus stop does not require interaction, hence no pants required. This works 98% of the time.
On this day, it did not work.
I got to the top of my road, which is at the top of a rather steep and winding hill. There were a few trucks parked up there and one of the drivers hopped out and flagged me down. He proceeded to tell me that I probably shouldn't go down, as the hill was a sheet of ice, and 3 cars had already tried and had failed spectacularly at staying on the road. One truck was currently laying on it's side up against a tree, and after seeing it I can only say that it's a miracle no one was seriously hurt.
Logically I knew I was stuck at the top of the hill, it wasn't worth the risk to attempt to go home, however all I could think to say to this kind man trying to make sure I didn't get myself killed was "But I need to go home, I'm not wearing pants".
I have a way with words.
One of my coworkers happened to show up on the scene shortly after I did, and was professional enough not to make too many jokes at my expense. I explained that I needed to get home and put some actual clothes on, as I had things to do in town, and that I was weighing the pros and cons of hiking overland rather than following the road.
|My husband, who maps things for a living, wanted|
me to tell you he had no part in the drawing of this shitty map.
Also, this map is not even remotely to scale.
Con: There was an excellent chance that hiking alone through the forest would result in my getting eaten by a cougar.
For reasons that still elude me, my saint-like coworker offered to hike into the forest with me to find my house and make sure that I didn't become breakfast for a large cat along the way. So off we went, headed in the general direction I figured my house was in; me in my pyjamas and slipper boots, and him dressed like a normal person who was humoring a crazy person on an unplanned hike through the forest first thing in the morning.
About 10 minutes into our unplanned adventure, I heard quietly behind me "You've come this way before, right?"
Conceptually yes. Technically....no.
But seriously, we go in a straight line. It should work. And thankfully, shortly thereafter we came over a hill and there was the house. I definitely owe this guy a coffee on our next shift.
I quickly got my shit together and we hiked back to the road and our vehicles. I carried on with the rest of my day until I decided enough time had passed to allow for the road crews to transform the rink into a road again. Crisis mostly averted.
So the moral of this story is that you should always wear clothes when you leave the house or you may end up hiking through a forest in pyjamas with a coworker who will probably bring it up in conversation at some future team building event.
And to really bring the story full circle, I'm also fairly sure that the pyjama pants I wore the last time I was stranded in the snow were the same ones I was stranded in this time. Might be time for a new pair....these ones seem cursed.