Tonight’s post is written by guest blogger and friend-of-the-blog (not to mention proprietress of the Spatial Anomaly Coffee Bar and Refueling Station) Mary
I used to think I was a cold weather person. When I was a kid I got hot very quickly causing my apple-cheeked face to go from really white to really red and make me very cranky. Long sleeved shirts, especially turtle necks, were my idea of torture during the school day. I’d run around and think blissfully of crisp fall and winter days when I could bundle and unbundle myself as necessary. Summer represented freedom from school, poolside fun, and air conditioned shelter. The hot and humid swamp that is my hometown does not invite outdoor fun during the months of July and August. Fact: diplomats stationed here during the, uh, warmer months get a little something called Tropical Pay to offset their discomfort. In my childhood I understood their pain and I, too, looked forward to that day that I could leave the swamp and abandon the confining humidity for a cooler climate and the possibility of snow.
Fast forward 20 years. I can’t believe I’m writing this…I actually like summer. Sure, the swamp heat still takes a little adjusting at the beginning of the season, and, sure, I don’t want to do any heavy labor outdoors during the day, but I can now say that I don’t hate it. In a way, I actually enjoy it. I love the cicadas, I love the thunderstorms, I love the vats of iced tea I get to drink. There are some things I still don’t care for, especially in my current set up, but I know they’re temporary and will ease up come September.
My current domicile, as both Kristy and Cammy can attest, is not the most pleasant place to be of an evening in mid-July. I dwell in a mostly original and very beaten down bungalow constructed in 1936. As a mostly original and very beaten down bungalow constructed in 1936, it has no central air conditioning, a state that has brought expressions of horror to the faces of most of my acquaintances. These peeps, who are mostly not from around these parts, are shocked at my ability to live with one noisy window unit and a warehouse worth of electric fans. But, Dear Reader, trust me when I say it’s not that bad. If the air is on then all blinds are closed, the door to my bedroom is shut, and the fan is switched on to move the air about. If the day isn’t hot enough to make the devil want a glass of lemonade, then the windows and doors are opened and the fan stays on to help with circulation.
But Mary, how do you sleep at night? Easy, I’m tired. Well, that and my room stays cooler than the rest of the house and it sits in a shadier portion of the property. I keep the windows open, position my bed in the middle of the room, keep the sheets to a minimum, and park my head directly under the ceiling fan. This is not to say that I haven’t had a couple of miserable nights that take me forever to fall asleep, but I find it’s actually pretty comfortable.
My current state of Abstract Employment also allows me the opportunity to enjoy the summer days. Instead of being locked up in an air conditioned vault for 9+ hours of the day, I get to job hunt and listen to the cicadas waking up and feel the sizzle of the day when I go out to run errands and remind myself that there is a world beyond the bungalow, my computer screen, and the seemingly interminable process of applying for jobs.
Could I live in a land of Forever Summer? No. Florida is my idea of purgatory, but ask me again when I hit 70. I like the change of seasons and process of change and renewal. I like changing out my wardrobe and adding a blanket to the growing pile on the bed. But will I enjoy summer while it’s here? Yes. It’s good for the soul and humidity is good for the skin. That’s my mantra, anyway.