A Better Way of Taking Off Gumboots and Overpants

Tonight, I became the poster boy for the results of procrastination—but I learned something.

We separated Coco and Sucky (Henrieta Hamburger) yesterday, so today was milking day. Rainy, cold milking day. And, because I put it off earlier, I was facing a dark milking evening. You know, “Maybe it will stop raining and I’ll go milk then.” No. It just kept raining and then it got dark.

Luckily, I have quality storm gear. I use the Kaiwaka Stormtec overpants and jacket. These are 100% waterproof for when it’s really ugly out. I couldn’t have done it without my trusty headlamp—although this one is probably better. That is, I couldn’t have procrastinated and still managed to get the job done without my trusty headlamp.

If you try to tuck the overpants into your gumboots, rainwater will cascade down the pants and soak the insides of your gumboots. To keep the rainwater out of your gumboots, you’ve got to wear the overpants OVER the gumboots. (Don’t worry, I understand all of this rocket science.) The pants have snaps on the legs at the bottom. I’ve tried snapping them around the tops of my gumboots and then folding the extra material over, but the snaps come undone during work. The result is that all the water, shit, mud, etc. that normally goes up the sides of your gumboots also gets on the insides of the overpants at the bottom.

This only becomes a problem when you go to get out of your gear. The gumboots come off and then you get slimy legs when you take the pants off.

I managed to milk Coco. The narrow beam from my headlamp was my only window into the pitch blackness all around me. The light cut through the steam coming up from the warm milk in my bucket. Coco’s valves and pipes bubbled and gurgled away as she gobbled her palm kernel and molasses treat.

My gear was soaked from head to toe and I’d gone calf high in slop on my walk to the shed in the pouring rain. As I milked away, I was thinking, “It’s nice to be dry, but how am I going to get out of these pants without getting mud and crap on my legs?”

Kiwis are probably born just knowing the answer to this ancient conundrum. Unfortunately, all of this is quite new to me. I stumble around and do stupid things that often don’t work, but, tonight, I really just wanted to stay clean for some reason. If I wanted to get out of those gumboots and pants without getting muck on my legs, I was going to have to put some thought into it.

I finished milking and slogged my way back up to the house to deliver the bucket to Becky.

All that was left was to go to the garage and get out of my gear.

And that’s when it hit me…


Just drop the overpants all the way down around the gumboots and step out of the whole mess! Then pull the overpants up and off of the gumboots.

No, a beam of light didn’t shine down from the heavens to mark my glorious epiphany, but I chuckled at the nature of the “problems” in my life now and the fact that I can find happiness in such a trivial thing as shedding my rain gear.

3 Responses to “A Better Way of Taking Off Gumboots and Overpants”

  1. andy says:

    elegant photo.

  2. William says:

    Or you could just think ‘the hell with it’ and do the job barefooted. A quick squirt with the hose and you’re done.

  3. Kevin says:

    How do you reconcile advocating going bare foot and then using a hose???