7/17/2013

It's so hot!

I never thought I'd be saying this while in the UK but... it's so hot! Now, I know I'm Mexican and as such I "should"  be used to this weather, but hear me out.

I had the privilege to grow up in a micro-climate: a really temperate town just south of Mexico City, called Cuernavaca. It's weather was perfect: warm enough to make sure everyone had a pool in their house, plenty of vegetation year round, but cool enough that you could actually live there without melting. It used to be called the City of Eternal Spring. It really was perfect. (Since I moved away ten years ago this has changed: a lot of the vegetation has been taken down to build shopping malls and houses.)

Then I moved away to college to a drier town, which also had a greater temperature variation between seasons. But even though the winters were cold, I got used to it. And after that I went to Mexico City, not as variable as Puebla but certainly not as nice as Cuernavaca.

Now I'm here, in the UK, and having spent 8 months wearing long sleeves, sweaters, thick socks, and jackets, the sudden increase in temperatures felt heavenly... until they didn't. You see, it's a heat wave, which means the was no gradual increase. We went from around 16ºC to almost 30º in a few days, and it shows no signs of relenting. Also, it's so humid the air feels heavy. There's also the fact that it's one of the hottest summer in the past 10 years or so, and people are not used to it. Houses are built to keep the heat in, not out or even circulating. It's stifling.

I guess it comes down to this: I'm used to milder weather, where heatwaves are kept off by the surrounding mountains (all the places I've lived in Mexico are valleys, though Puebla is more of a plateau). What's especially annoying to me is that I left all my summer clothes back home and most of my clothes here include long sleeves and legs, or warm fabrics.

There's not much I, or anyone, can do. Keep hydrated, open up windows and doors to create currents, and of course, do try to reduce your carbon footprint. This crazy weather is due to climate change, and anything we can do to stop it is more than a welcome respite for the planet. On that note, go check out 100 Places, which is a project to raise awareness about this issues. It's a beautiful collection of photographs that really makes it clear where we are headed.

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'll go chase the 99p ice cream van!





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