The truth about Raincouver

A warning to incoming first years: you will be lulled into a false sense of security in September. Still aglow in the summer sunshine, campus will be absolutely beautiful. Wreck Beach trips will be a daily routine and everyone on campus will be happy and friendly and really, really, ridiculously good-looking. “This is awesome,” you will think to yourself. “Everyone who said it rains in Vancouver all the time was totally wrong!”

And then October hits, and you can kiss being dry goodbye for the next four months.

If it weren’t for the rain, I swear Vancouver would be the most perfect place to live in the world. Sadly, you can’t have it all. But if you’re able to cope with the weather, life in rainy Vancouver really isn’t so bad. Here are my tips for dealing with the drizzle:

Buy a solid pair of rainboots. UBC doesn’t have puddles. It has small lakes. You don’t want to suffer through your longest day of the week with wet, squelchy socks. Plus, you feel like a badass wading through massive puddles with dry feet. Get a raincoat as well. They might not be stylish, but you’ll be glad you bought it when you’re not dripping as you walk into lecture. An umbrella is a good idea, too, although you can survive without one if you have a raincoat and don’t mind your hood messing up your hair (I made it through the whole year umbrella-free). Just make sure you have an extra, because I guarantee you will lose at least one over the course of the year.

Don’t buy a canvas backpack. It will get soaked, and the rain will ruin all your meticulously copied lecture notes. Try and get one that’s somewhat water-resistant, and keep your important papers in a plastic folder to avoid runny ink and disintegrated sheets of lined paper. If you simply must have that Urban Outfitters canvas bag, spray it with some water-repellant spray. You can buy it at most shoe stores (I got mine from Soft Moc).

Prepare your bike for the elements. If you bike around campus, make sure that you have fenders on your tires to keep water from splashing water all over your derriere. Also, lock your bike up in a covered location wherever possible to avoid rusting, and be sure to take it for regular tune-ups.

Always be prepared. It doesn’t matter if the sky is as clear as a Neutrogena model’s skin when you step out your door. By the end of the day, the weather could be as wet and dreary as ever. Dress in layers and always, always bring your raingear along.

Take vitamin D pills. You can go weeks without seeing sunshine in the winter months, which could mean that your body isn’t getting enough Vitamin D. You can buy these pills over-the-counter at any Shoppers or health store. Make sure to take them regularly, as you need the vitamin to build up in your system in order to reap the benefits!

Embrace the rain. As effective as you might believe your rain dance to be, you can’t control the weather. Don’t let the dreary, grey scene outside your window keep you from having an awesome day, and remember that rainy days just make you more thankful for the sunny ones. Besides, the rain is what keeps everything so green and beautiful year-round!

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