Friday, August 21, 2015

Maybe the Wicked Witch was Just Hot

Last night Vince and I watched the weather report on the news and he was surprised to learn that it was in the low 60s. They called it “cuddle weather” and “blanket weather.” 

I just called it “relief.”

You see, I’ve spent much of the last week being hot.  I don’t like being hot.  I’d rather be cold and put more layers on than to be hot, sweaty and sticky.

So you can imagine how much I loved it last weekend when we rather impulsively agreed to meet our friends and their three little boys at the Columbus Zoo.

In hindsight, we definitely should have checked the weather report first.

While it was a beautiful, sunny day, the outside temperatures were approaching 90 degrees with the humidity level hovering somewhere around nine thousand percent.  And if the percentage of humidity can be any higher than that, let’s go with that number.  It was H-O-T, hot. And, even worse, it was horribly humid.

And I – much like the Wicked Witch of the West – was melting.

You think I’m exaggerating?  (She asks after saying the humidity level was 9000%.)

I had applied my makeup that morning as I normally do before heading out in public lest I scare the little children, and by the time we’d gotten to the entrance of the zoo, it had all slid off my face and landed in a big puddle on the ground at my feet.  Yeah, that was attractive.

Fortunately, my hair was pulled back off my face and neck, so that helped some, but I spent most of the day wiping sweat off my forehead to keep it from dripping into my eyes and yearning for central air conditioning. 

Watching three little boys having fun at the zoo helped a lot – as did the ice cold drinks their dad kept handing us.  Of course, the ice in those drinks melted within moments, but it was a relief while it lasted.

Even the boys had issues with the heat. They all wore adorable “Columbus Zoo” hats to shield them from the sun, but whenever we stopped to watch a show or see an exhibit that was out of the sun, they immediately took off their hats.  And the hair on their little heads was all wet with sweat.

Their mom and I took turns blowing on their heads to cool them off.  I had hoped they would think it was a fun game and do the same for us, but no such luck. Hey, by that point, anything cool would’ve been a relief.

After the zoo, we all had tentatively planned to hang out together and have a little cookout, but we were all so bedraggled, we decided it would be better to go our separate ways and peel off our soggy clothes and take showers just to feel human again.

Besides, none of us wanted to cook.  Vince and I ended up ordering a pizza while our friends stopped somewhere on the way home and picked up dinner.

So while it was fun hanging out with our friends and a joy to watch those little faces light up with the wonders of the animal kingdom, I will have to remember that 9000% humidity is just a tad too uncomfortable and from now on we should probably seek indoor entertainment.

Speaking of being a tad uncomfortable, the next day I decided to drive to my elderly parents’ home in northeast Ohio. I had some paperwork they needed to sign and they are not equipped with newfangled gadgets like computers that could eliminate the need for five hour round trip road trips.

On the other hand, I am happy to spend a little time with my parents whenever I have the chance, so I was glad to make the drive.

What I wasn’t so glad about was the fact that my mom is always cold. And my mom rules the roost.  So if Mom is cold, the heat in the house must be on even if the temperature outside is in the upper 80s.

I couldn’t tell for sure, but I think perhaps we could have cracked an egg on the family room table and it would’ve been sizzling within minutes.

Fortunately, I know that mom is always cold and that the heat would most likely be on, so I planned ahead.  I brought with me a paper fan that I had picked up at the Ohio State fair a few weeks ago.

Smart, eh?

Within moments of my arrival, I hauled that paper fan out of my purse and started fanning myself like the most zealous church lady in Alabama in August.

And it helped.  A little.

Dad, who is usually on the chilly side himself, was wearing shorts and a thin polo shirt and actually looked a little warm. 

Finally, he picked up the inside/outside temperature gauge that was sitting on the table next to him and looked at it. Then he looked at me.  And then he asked my mom if it was okay if he turned on the air conditioning.  When my mother protested and asked him why, he said it was 81 degrees in the house!

Once I heard that, my hot flashes started anew.

Mom, on the other hand, was perfectly comfortable in her long sleeve shirt and cardigan with a blanket covering her knees.

Egad.  I know my thermostat these days is broken, but Mom’s must be set on permafrost.  Does the woman not have any warm blood running through her veins?

I suspected that if we had taken my mother to the zoo the day before, she would have said it was a “little chilly” out.

By the time I left their house to drive back to Columbus I was, once again, a soggy, sodden mess. I turned every vent in the car so that it was facing me and I blasted that cold air all the way home.

And then I felt a little better.

So while I am not a big fan of winter’s cold and snow and ice, I am very much looking forward to the changing season when there is a bit of a chill in the air and I can add a layer for warmth if necessary.

You know, I used to think the Wicked Witch of the West was just mean and nasty, but now I’m beginning to wonder if the lady was just plain hot. 

Plus, no one…I mean no one…wants to see green makeup sliding off her face and landing on the ground in a big puddle at her feet.

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