Thursday, July 12

Keeping Cool

Well it's definitely summer now and if you didn't believe in global warming before, surprise, it exists! I say this because Alberta (and other parts of Canada and The States) are experiencing a major heat wave. I've been doing a lot of complaining about the heat, I tend to melt in the sun like a crayon, but I still remember last year when it rained pretty much the entire two and a half months we call a summer. I liked that even less. Turns out, I like summer. I like going to the beach, the farmers market, wearing a bathing suit, going for long walks, and drinking slushy drinks on patios.

Of course last year I still lived at home in my parents basement which is always the perfect temperature no matter how hot or cold it may be outside. This summer, the one with the heatwave, I find myself living on my own for the first time in a semi-air-conditioned apartment. And when I say semi-air-conditioned I mean that there are  mysterious vents that you can feel are kinda cold when you touch them but don't seem to be actually blowing air into the apartment, and a thermostat that no matter what temperature it is set at, doesn't actually seem to do anything. Not being able to afford to go out and buy a portable air conditioner, Mr. Nick and I are considering our options and have decided on a few courses of action which should take the heat off us (literally).

Since I'm discovering all these ways to stay cool for the first time I thought I would tell you folks about them in case you have more tips, or would like some of mine.

1. We're going to buy a ceiling fan. Now, we haven't yet, so I don't know how much exactly this will help us, but it certainly can't hurt. Especially since we're planning on hiring an electrician to install it and hopefully will not experience it falling on us.
2. We've only recently learned, after several days of dealing with the heat, that it's best to close all of your windows during the day so the hot air can't get in. Only open your windows in the evening, or at night once the sun has set and the air starts to cool off. This is a brilliant tip, and one of those things you need to either be told to do or be smart enough to figure out on your own. I was the first one.
3. I read somewhere on the internet that you can wet down a towel, wring it out so that it is only slightly damp, and then drape yourself with it. Well I tried this last night, with the fan blowing on me and my towel and let me tell you, it was the best sleep I've had in ages! The towel isn't dripping wet so you don't get wet or sticky, and the blowing air keeps your towel cool so it doesn't absorb your body heat and get warm. Soooo nice. You know in Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy how Ford says to never forget where your towel is? Thinkin' he was right on that one.
4. Another thing we haven't done yet, but are planning on doing soon, is buy some sun absorbing curtains to hang. Right now we have regular white blinds and I don't think they're doing much to stop the heat. By all accounts, light colored curtains with more the one layer can be very helpful when it comes to blocking some of the heat from entering the house. One internet persona even went so far as to buy a reflective blanket made to be kept in a vehicle in case of an accident, and sew it into a curtain as a reflective liner. This sounds awesome. And kinda flashy.
5. If things get hairy and you're feeling overly warm and ornery -- sit down, have a glass of water, and place a damp cloth on the back of your neck. I didn't know this was a thing until Nick came home on Sunday night and found me crying because I burned dinner and was too hot to think of a solution. He sat me down and applied this damp cloth magic and within minutes I had stopped telling him he was ruining my life. Success.

Of course there are other ways to beat the heat that Nick and I have been engaging in, like going over to our parents houses for dinner and staying until the sun goes down, going to the outdoor pool for an afternoon, and or going to the theater, shopping mall, or other air conditioned establishment.

Well, I hope these tips help you sweat it out. And don't panic! Just remember where your towel is.

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