Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘weather wimp’

I can handle triple-digit heat. I lived in Jerusalem for a couple of years. I’ve camped in the deserts of California, Nevada, and Arizona. In summers of my youth, my folks dragged us all to northern Minnesota to visit relatives where the humidity was 99% and the temperature was higher.

Here in Seattle, we can all handle high-heat days. We regularly get temps in the 90s and often have a few days in the mid-100s.

In August.

But June? Jeez, give us a chance to acclimate, why don’t ya?

The month of June in Seattle is often referred to as “Juneuary” due to its tendency to flip-flop between typically rainy days in the low 60s and gloriously clear days in the mid-70s. The average temperature for June is 69°F (21°C).

Yesterday, 28 June 2021, it was 107°F (42°C), the peak of the most intense, most protracted heat wave in our history, and the city stopped.

We saw it coming. We had a week in the 80s, then a week of high 90s, and all the forecasts were warning us: Sunday and Monday, the streets would be lava.

And they were right. Concrete sidewalks buckled. Asphalt pavements melted. Insulation on wires began to sag and slough off. Expansion joints on bridges shut as the steel girders expanded.

Seattle was not built for this. Our infrastructure was not built for this. Our homes were not built for this.

In Seattle, our homes are built to retain heat, not dissipate it. The vast majority of homes have no central cooling, and more than half don’t have any A/C at all. Businesses, especially in older buildings, are often in a similar fix, relying on fans to keep the air circulating for some evaporative cooling.

I’m lucky. Fifteen years ago, when our furnace died, we replaced it and also put in central A/C. But even with the A/C blasting, it had to fight our insulated roof and insulated windows that kept the heat in, and the best it could do was keep the house ten degrees cooler than the outside. For many of our neighbors, it was hotter in their homes than outside, and it was an oven outside.

It’s been this hot before. I went to a Moody Blues concert at an outdoor venue on the hottest day of that year: 109°F. We sat in the steamy heat with our frozen bottles of water and our wine spritzers, but we survived. It was August. We’d had a two-month run-up of increasingly hot temps, and we were ready for it.

But this. This is a classic case of too much, too soon, and for too long.

We had some respite overnight. The winds picked up and some of that blessed marine layer came onshore. The overnight lows dropped into the mid-60s. I’ve had all the windows open since the cat woke me at 5AM, but the mercury is starting to climb, so I need to go around and button it up, to trap as much of that coolth and I can.

It’s 7:30AM.

Gonna be another scorcher.

k

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: