Sunday, June 30, 2013
Pacific Northwest is hot, too
I spent the day yesterday at Snohomish, making four skydives and having a really good time with my friends. But as I was packing up my parachute after each jump, drops of sweat fell from my forehead onto the container. The dew point is also higher than usual, meaning that the humidity is high. After the fourth jump, I decided to bring it home unpacked and asked Smart Guy to pack it for me. He agreed, but it's just a pile of nylon sitting in the living room right now.
And it's just going to get hotter for the next few days. I read that several places in northern California broke temperature records yesterday. We don't have air conditioning in most of our homes here, because there are so few days when we really need it. We had the fan going all night, and that will probably be the situation for the next week or so. The only good part is that my garden will be happy, as long as I keep it watered (which I will).
I remember the second summer we were here, there was another heat wave. It got really really hot, and I was acclimatized after over a year when we didn't experience anything over 80 degrees. We broke lots of records here in the Pacific Northwest in late July 2009. We are not likely to break too many this time, since it's supposed to be short-lived and much worse on the east side of the Cascades. But that doesn't mean we won't complain mightily. Today I'll spend some time in a movie theater with my friend Judy, where it'll be cool and comfortable.
I am not looking forward to the upcoming holiday. I don't know what it is about fireworks that attracts so many people to set them off for days. Although the Fourth isn't until Thursday, I suspect that we will have to endure nights of hot weather along with bursts of rocket fire. With the windows open, the sounds are even worse. Plus the buses won't be running, and the Y will be closed for the holiday. In retirement, the holidays are my least favorite times. My entire routine is disrupted. When I was working, I appreciated having the time off to enjoy myself, but now it's just the opposite. I'll get my bike off the front porch and go for a spin, maybe take a bit longer ride than usual, find some new bike routes. Just got to get a little creative.
Well, I just read over what I've written so far and realize I sound really grumpy! I guess I am a little, since I didn't sleep well last night, tossing and turning and never cooling off sufficiently. I just looked to see what the temperature was yesterday in Boulder, my old home town, and it was 91. I would have been grumpy there, too. Is it getting hotter everywhere, or is it just my imagination? Many of my blogging friends have been complaining about hotter-than-usual weather lately, with plenty of damaging storms. I should count my blessings instead of concentrating on the downside of my current situation, don't you think? I could be living in Texas, where most of my family lives, sweltering in really hot conditions.
Is it part of the human condition that I compare my life to others to make myself feel better? There is a woman that I see on the bus every now and then who is in a wheelchair and must be paralyzed from the neck down. She uses one of those mouth controls that gives her amazing agility. I watch her drive her chair up the bus ramp and turn 180 degrees and back into the space where the bus driver then straps her chair in. I just looked up the way it's controlled, and it's called a "sip-and-puff" system. Inhaling and exhaling to control the movement. She also has another person with her at all times, but he doesn't seem to do anything to assist her and seems to be there just in case. As I've thought many times, there but for the grace of God...
I hope if I am ever disabled that I will get out and enjoy life to the best of my ability. I've had my share of accidents and have screws and pins that are permanent parts of my body, but it works just fine, with only a twinge of discomfort now and then. Heck, most people when they get to seventy have aches and pains, so I will concentrate on the good parts. I feel gratitude for being ambulatory and still able to jump out of airplanes just for the fun of it.
Well, now that I've given myself that attitude adjustment, finished my morning tea and am now looking forward to the day, it's almost time to get out of bed, dress, and water the garden before it gets hot. I hope wherever you are today, you will take care of yourself and look for the blessings that may be hiding in unexpected places.