Whew! It feels like the Bangor region got a hot flash that lasted for a couple of days, but today it has passed. It was chilly enough to want to close the windows back up in the kitchen this morning. Hot, humid weather sucks all of the energy out of my being. I feel like one of Salvador Dali's melting clocks.
I guess I chose the right latitude to live in.
I spent the summer of 1981 in Cambridge, Massachusetts at Harvard summer school. I was studying French to prepare for a semester abroad, and thank goodness the language labs were air conditioned. The dormitories, sadly, were not. There was a killing heat wave in the US that summer, and it showed in Cambridge. I remember being struck by how the pace of life slowed down. No one wanted to make any unnecessary movements that might create even the slightest elevation in their body temperature.
Widespread air conditioning is yet another way that we humans have created unnatural environments for ourselves (see my living in the zoo post). Surely it has increased our productivity in those regions where the heat could shrivel you up in no time. But -- is an increase in productivity always the best thing? Maybe climate was designed to slow us down in the summertime. We consume so much industrial energy trying to keep everyone cool. The net gain for the planet might not be so great.
Would it be so terrible if we all just slowed down?
It was a great day for clouds - cameras cannot translate to my satisfaction. This little collection has some particularly striking shapes -- what do you see?