Heat Wave

I remember the year it snowed in the Oakland hills – 1976. I remember the Week of Thunderstorms, when the SF Bay Area had more or less continuous heat lightning and thunder for a straight week. This was in the late 1990’s – I don’t remember the exact year. This little exercise of my faculties establishes two things. We don’t have a lot of extreme weather in this area. And I don’t remember those few very well.

This week, the SF Bay Area experienced record three-digit temperatures and some Severe Weather Alerts. Yes, we do get heat waves, but they’re unusual in May. No, citizens of Phoenix, you would not have found anything remarkable about this week, here up north, but it’s rare to find days when it’s hotter up here than down there.

Air conditioners are rare up here, so the trick is the old one used in homes of thick adobe walls in the old Southwest: open up all the doors and windows at night, and seal in the cold air by closing everything up during the day. Even so, I found myself working late “on call” at home the other night. It was still 86 in the computer room.

The heat wave is about over. Opening the apartment to the night air got the place down to 70 degrees. Early this morning, there is a slight breeze running through the apartment. I had to go and toss on a T-shirt. They’re calling for a high of 82 today. I can certainly welcome that!

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