Friday, July 22, 2011

Heat Wave

Where I'm from, we have air conditioning... everywhere. And people know better than to go out in the heat of the day.

Here in Boston, heat makes people panicky. And then they walk around in the heat and talk about the heat.

I'm not denying it's hot. It's too hot to bake, or to stand over a stove. It's too hot to run outside. So what do I do?

I have my ways to cope.

Last night, I was supposed to meet L and E for a walk over to the South End. But my white jeans and linen button down were too hot. I flew home, changed to a lace minidress, and took a taxi, beating them to Sibling Rivalry by five minutes.

And then I did one of my all-time favorite things. Most parents teach their children how to throw a football or to use an iron. Mine taught me how to order food. So I ordered appetizers for dinner. With the air hot and heavy outside, the smaller, lighter dishes were more appealing: a salad of sunchokes, fennel, and grapefruit with spicy arugula followed by a plate of sauteed shrimp.

This morning, dehydrated and tired, I stopped to buy a banana and coconut water. I'm all about potassium. Seventeen ounces of coconut water later, I felt superhuman.

At 1pm, I was face down in iced coffee. No, really. I moved my iced coffee as close to the edge of my desk as possible and leant over, keeping the straw in my mouth and sipping as I typed.

At 6pm, it was time to go home -- no option, but to leave the air conditioning. I fought with the rest of the city to get on the T. Six trains went past before one came with enough room to squeeze on. I couldn't reach the handrails, but it didn't matter. The train was so full that I was braced in position.

Until the heat wave breaks, I'll be hiding out in the air conditioning and wearing my big straw hat if I have to go out.

And then maybe on Sunday or Monday, I'll go back into the kitchen. I'm thinking about custard and ice cream and frozen truffles.

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