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28 June 2012 @ 07:50 pm
hottest day since 1988  
Like I've mentioned, my life is very simple now so there is less to write about than in previous years.

June stayed dry and perhaps just slightly cooler than normal up until yesterday. Then today, a heat wave began, with a high of 102 at the airport.

We really haven't had a very hot summer since the horrible all-season-long heat wave of 1988.

I am 58. Air conditioning never really became common until the late sixties or seventies. I never really spent time in it until I began working in offices in the late seventies when I was about 24. I did just fine staying cool the old-fashioned ways through several very hot summers when I was a kid. I am now off the grid and retired so I am rediscovering after about 34 years life mostly away from AC 24/7.

Today the temperature in my condo peaked at 95. I felt very comfortable all day simply by wearing nothing but shorts, and by completely sponging myself with cold water about once per hour. Ghost my cat is fine, having slept all day stretched out on surfaces that absorb his body heat, such as the ceramic floor in the bathroom.

I also built a super-thick styrofoam cooler, with 4" walls, compared to about 1" for most picnic coolers. I put about 15 pounds of ice in it last night and then some food. After one day, less than ten percent of the ice has melted.

Throughout this heatwave, when I want to spend a day outside, I will get out on the downtown biketrails early before they get hot, and get to the shady areas along the Stillwater River and at Wegerzyn Center Park before noon. I will be in the woods sitting on a bench reading a book or on the internet, or wading in the river until about 6, when it will be cool enough to head back to my condo on the bike paths again.

I am more worried on days like today about air pollution affecting my health than heat. I will be paying attention to how my body seems to be reacting to that all summer. I think air conditioners really help to filter the particulates out although I don't think they remove the ozone that seems to cause fatigue for me. By the end of summer I'll know more.