In honor of the fact that it is going to hit 110 degrees today, tomorrow or Monday, depending upon which weather forecaster you dare to believe.....
I'm now describing the facts about living in the desert in the summer. So all you northern folks enjoying your spring/summer frolicking in the green grass, eating fresh strawberries out of your garden and basking in the sun, please feel appropriately sorry for me. And you desert dwellers, feel free to chime in at any time.
I don't know why, but it always seems like the intense summer heat just slams us up side the head. We had a gorgeous May, with only one or two days hitting 100 degrees. So why o why can't the intense heat just sorta slowly creep up on us, kinda like a frog in water beginning to boil? (you know the old story)
Noooo, it has to arrive with a bang, within just a few days. We are ambling along, getting used to the upper 90s and then wham! The predictions of 108, 109, 110 and beyond hit within a matter of a few days.
For the uninitiated, let me describe:
Pretend that you are going to bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies. First you preheat the oven to 350 degrees. And after you've mixed up your nice batch of cookies, you open the oven door to place the cooky sheet inside the oven. You open the oven door...
And blink rapidly at the wave of heat that hits you in the face before quickly shoving the cooky sheet in the oven and slamming the door closed.
That's what it's like here every time I open up my front door in the summer.
Or the car door.
Things you learn when living in the desert heat:
You get up early to try to get everything done outside to avoid the heat. At least it doesn't hit 90 degrees until 9 am.....
Your garden shrivels up and quits producing because no sane plant produces flowers for fruit above about 95 degrees.
In fact, the only flowers that bloom in the summer are strange looking ones that may have been transplanted from the planet Mars. (except for the ever loving boring vinca-periwinkle plant).
You sign up for this weird program with the power company called "Time of Use Plan" desperately hoping that your electric bill will stay under $400 a month. This means that you must complete all washing, drying, cooking, baking and use of air conditioner prior to 1 pm. The AC stays below 75 degrees until then, and then it gets turned up to about 82......The entire family languishes for the rest of the day, or at least until 8 pm when the AC temp can be reduced.
The most commonly used words in the mother language repertoire is,
"SHUT THE DOOR!"
The only time you can visit the Phoenix Zoo is at 7:00 am and be sure to be there on the dot so you can dash back to your air conditioned car at 8:00 am.
You institute a program with your children called "Quiet Time," which they dread and hate every summer and causes extreme mental anguish and psychological trauma even to the time they are adults, until they get their own kids and realize what a great idea it is. The program is thus: All extraneous neighbor children, those unrelated by blood or birth, are banished to their own homes in the afternoon. This is when we all quietly watch tv, read books and play happily with our siblings while the heat of the day rages outside. (this works in theory of course)
You grow mold in your home due to the wet towels heaped up constantly by the back door. Of course you can sterilize those towels in about 10.37 seconds by hanging them outside in the blazing sun.
Cold cereal and cantaloupe become the staple on the dinner menu list.
You NEVER EVER go outside without some type of footwear on since merely treading on the sidewalk can cause 2nd degree burns in 10.37 seconds (please see sterilizing towels paragraph above). And especially necessary when you lock yourself out of the house.
Yes, you can fry an egg on the sidewalk but it's really, really messy and doesn't cook all the way through. NEVER try it on a car.
When going outside at midday, it is absolutely silent. No sound of little children happily playing, no birds singing or bees buzzing, just the sound of the humming of all the neighborhood air conditioners.
And because we live in a place that is surrounded by asphalt and concrete, it never really cools down at night. We've never really had a good ol' fashioned 4th of July here, because it's too dang hot! Who wants to go out at 10 pm and watch fireworks on the grass when it's 102 at 10 pm?????
So feel appropriately sorry for me for choosing to live in the Den of the Devil. I DESERVE those gorgeous winters..........
I've whined long enough, time to gird up the loins and face the heat. I'll be happy again about October 31st.