Sunday, February 22

Summer days

When I hear about Summer in the Northern Hemisphere, it seems like it is a time of generally frolicking outdoors; picnics, water fights, and snoozing under big leafy trees. Not so in Adelaide (and most of Australia for that matter). Summer in Adelaide is hot. Like really hot. Like it is 8pm and it is still 35 degrees C outside hot. Like the temperature regularly reaches 40 degrees C and above hot (today it was 39). Also, the UV danger is 'Extreme' for the entire time that the sun is up. Every. Single. Day. You just cannot possibly go outside. Like outside will kill you.

To add to the fun, electricity costs more in Summer, so I for one, try to avoid using my air conditioner at all costs. Electricity costs more for two reasons, 1) because it is the peak period of power usage due to air conditioners and so the power companies can make more money, and, 2) because it acts as a deterrent to using your air conditioner, this is necessary because during heat waves (4+ days of 38+ degrees C) when everyone has their air conditioners on, there is literally not enough power for the city. This results in what are known as 'rolling blackouts', where suburbs are blacked out in turn for about an hour at a time in an effort to 'share the load'. Interestingly when I have spoken to people who live in the more affluent areas of the city though, they have never experienced blackouts during heatwaves... so I have a feeling it's not so much 'sharing the load' as 'poor people taking the burden so that rich people can have their air conditioners on'. Anyway... I don't really mind the heat most of the time, I much prefer it to the cold. So I keep cool the old fashioned way, sucking on ice, watching David Attenborough's Life in the Freezer, and having lots and lots of cold showers. It is also the norm during these very hot weeks to keep your blinds shut, in an effort to keep your house as cool as possible. So this is what every room of my house looks like every day:

It is hot. It's dark. You're stuck inside all day, every day. What do you do?! I want to share with you a day of living through the Adelaide Summer.

Firstly, I started my day with an 8:30am yoga and meditation session run in Botanic Park in the city. Driving into the city it looked as if Autumn had come early, with big piles of leaves gathering along the footpaths, but actually it was just that the leaves are all dying due to the heat. It was very overcast but still hot, already over 30 degrees, however after the past few days it actually felt quite pleasantI love going to this yoga session, not only does it leave me feeling really revitalized and energetic, but Botanic Park is just such a lovely setting. While practicing yoga we had probably 1000 flying foxes (AKA fruit bats) chattering in the trees above us.

When I got home, I cleaned Christian's tank, and then loaded it and the fish tanks up with bottles of frozen water. It's disturbing when your tanks are almost at 30 degrees C and changing the water actually makes the tank hotter.

Next it was time for the first of today's cold showers, followed by some TV (doesn't require movement, which generates heat). However, I was feeling crafty (in the best kind of way) and I was itching to make something. A couple of days ago my mum and I were in Spotlight and saw this fabric on sale for $4 a metre.

I fell in love with it and Mum very kindly bought some for me. It's warm, fleecy material so I decided to make some Winter pyjama pants out of it (you can find the tutorial here). I think they turned out quite well, especially as this is the first time I have ever made any kind of clothing.

Not bad for $4! Plus $3 for elastic... It took me over 2 hours to make them, due to some silly mistakes by me, but I really want to make more! I think you can expect to see a lot more DIY clothing projects on this blog in the future! I just love this fabric. I love that I now have carrot pants. Excellent.

My productivity continued after that, when I finished The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which my sister lent to me on Boxing Day. And which I started not long after that. Yay! She will stop giving me those horrible long-suffering looks now that I'm finally returning it to her.

Apologies for the dark picture it was, you know, dark in my house. What with all the blinds being shut and all.

And now, I sit. And I type. And I dream of tomorrow when a cool change is coming (only 27 degrees! It will feel freezing!). I check the website for the Bureau of Meteorology to see when the change is coming in, when can I open my house up and get some cool, fresh, air in?! Not until dawn tomorrow. Another hot night here. I will open my door just to check, even though I know that the air outside will still be hotter than the air in here. Maybe I should just have another cold shower.

Happy staying cool, or warm, depending where in the world you are! :)

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