Wow, July is almost over–can you believe how fast time flies? It’s been a very wet and fairly hot summer which my allergies and adipose deposits (from lack of outdoor activity due to heat intolerance) have thoroughly taken advantage of. Meanwhile, up in New England, they’ve had a cool spell of weather in the 60s and 70s–during the day. I do have a bit of envy, I admit, especially since a “cold front” down here at this time of year means it goes from humid and 90s to drier air and 80s…how refreshing. Granted, it does get down to the 70s here at night. Yay. Just in time for the mosquito and spider populations to come out of hiding. I want a screened-in porch for just that reason.
After living down here for this 7+ year stretch, I have figured out that I gain weight in the summer because I become a bit of a hermit in my air-conditioned house and have decreased activity (other than fat cell generation), as a result. In New England, people tend to gain weight in the winter, but I never really had a problem with that. Shoveling and shivering burns calories, you know. I was also more active outdoors during the winters up there versus the summers down here because it is always easier to add more clothing to stay warm than shed clothing to stay cool. The former has more effective results than the latter and the latter can gain the attention of law enforcement if taken too far, or so I’ve been told.
Granted, when I last lived up North, I was younger and “they” say that increasing age has something to do with weight gain. I refuse to surrender to that common knowledge. Well, except for a temporary surrender when it’s hot enough outside to bake cookies in my car. I haven’t personally done that (that would only serve to increase any potential summer weight gain), but others have, apparently. Good for them.
I saw a meme that showed sweater season in Alabama as being while working in the office during the summer months. No kidding! There was also a Facebook post by a local tv station, asking people what temperature they kept their air conditioner thermostats set at. I’ve heard of people having $300-400 electric bills during the hot months. Being the thrifty New Englander that I am, I found that horrifying. However, after reading the comments on the tv station’s post, I can see why some people’s bills are so high. People had ranges of anywhere from the mid-60s to 80, most of them being in the very low 70s. I keep ours in the upper 70s to 80 during the day and lower 70s at night. I prefer to sleep in something akin to an icebox, if at all possible. I attribute that to the 58-degree temperature my parents kept the heat thermostat set at and, hence, the upstairs of my childhood colonial Massachusetts home all those years ago, every single winter. We had quilts. And comforters. And flannel pajamas. And record short times for things like getting dressed or sitting on the ice-cold toilet seat–assuming you were the first one to use it. On top of that, we had artesian well water, which if you are unfamiliar with that means c-c-c-old! Add to the freezing artesian well water the fact that the pipes had to travel from all the way down in the basement, it took forever…f.o.r.e.v.e.r… for the hot water to reach the upstairs bathroom, and as we were highly encouraged to not waste water or the oil used to heat it, washing of hands and faces also set speed records and was a great wake-up for any sluggish morning people. Brrrr! Yes, we did have a nice wood stove in our house which was all the way down the stairs, take a right through a hallway, go left through the kitchen (open-concept homes weren’t a thing, yet), and there it was in the den: a not very well-insulated room that was also the one we used as our main entryway to the house from the frigid outdoors, resulting in occasional contributions to global warming via the opened door. We all know that heat rises, but it never seemed to make it to the upstairs to warm it above that magic number of 58. Meanwhile, the den and kitchen were reminiscent of Hades–or Alabama summers. Speaking of which–
I wonder if the same people down here who keep their air conditioners set at the mid-60s are the same ones who complain when the outside temperature goes below 70? Hmmm…. What I really don’t get are the ones who keep their thermostats set low, then wear pants and sweaters or wrap up in blankets. Why? Okay, I admit, I do that at night while I’m on the couch reading or watching a show after everyone else has gone to bed, but it’s icebox temperature time, so that’s different. During the day? It’s tank top, shorts, and not much else. That’s why I warn people that if they are going to pop over for a visit, let me know, so I can put on that pesky, uncomfortable, pectoral adipose-tissue-filled-areas holder. Yes, “bra” would have been so much easier to type, but not as fun to describe. And so now you know how dressed I am or am not as I sit here blogging.
I now have to run–no, make that mosey–out to the mailbox to get the mail, then assuming I don’t faint from the heat on my way back to the cool indoors, will sweep this house’s seemingly endless supply of dog and cat hair. It’s a daily chore. I rrreally need the exercise, though, so I don’t rrreally mind….