Editorial: Trying to beat the heat

Melissa Jenkins
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If you left your home at all last week, chances are you felt the scorching humidity that engulfed much of our province.

Melissa Jenkins

The heat was intense. So intense, in fact, it broke provincial records.

Many adults in shorts and sandals, including some men without shirts, could be seen walking across the beach in Carbonear everyday, hoping to get a gust of cool air off the ocean.

Children wearing only swimwear entered air-conditioned places like the Trinity Conception Square shopping centre or a local convenience store to stay cool, while their parents picked up popsicles or a cool drink.

Local swimming holes and beaches were the place to be when the temperatures hit the mid-30s (with the humidex), while some parents opted for the old fashioned sprinkler to cool their children off.

But while many were finding ways to beat the heat, others were complaining about the constant beads of sweat dripping down their faces, necks and backs, not to mention the frizzy hair that comes along with it.

"It's too hot," was a common phrase uttered all over the region, but one not often said in this province.

In March and April of each year, thousands of people pay thousands of dollars to take a plane thousands of kilometres to sit on a beach, drinking pina coladas in the same intense heat. So why is it so different here?

Many Newfoundlanders are not accustomed to this type of heat.

It is one thing to prepare to go on a trip down south, build up a base tan at a solarium to avoid burning and having frozen drinks prepared regularly to keep cool. It is another to get overwhelmed with unexpected heat, getting sunburned from 10 minutes outdoors and the constant need to keep hydrated.

Also, some just like to complain.

OK, so not everyone is a complainer. But chances are, those who are publicly blasting this heat have likely complained about the bitter cold last winter.

Instead of complaining, why not embrace it. It won't be around much longer, and before we know it it'll be -25 again, three feet of snow on the ground and people will be complaining about snow clearing.

Still believe it's too hot? Here are a few easy solutions:

1. Make a homemade fan. All it takes is a piece of paper, folded like an accordion. Ta-da, you have a fan.

2. Keep plenty of fluids in the fridge and ice cubes and frozen treats in the freezer. How about some ice cream to beat the heat? Yes, please.

3. Get a sprinkler or a few water guns. And at a few bucks at the dollar store, they are worth the investment.

4. And finally, stop complaining. No one likes a negative Nellie, especially your next-door neighbour who owns that big pool you can see from your backyard.

So, try and enjoy the heat while it lasts. We'll be wishing for it in another four months.

Melissa.jenkins@tc.tc

Geographic location: Carbonear

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