HELEN LANG: Do you prefer hot or cold?

It is definitely getting warmer and the calendar claims it is summer but I haven’t heard of anyone going for a swim

The Canada Day parade on July 1 is over for this year. It is definitely getting warmer and the calendar claims it is summer but I haven’t heard of anyone going for a swim unless it was at the Panorama Rec Centre.

I seem to recall that even at the height of summer, on a boiling hot August day, there is no one brave enough to be swimming in the ocean on the Sidney side of the Peninsula. It makes me shiver just to think about it!

One of my daughters who works on a dude ranch in the Interior of the province where temperatures are already soaring, finds that a wet scarf worn around her neck while taking people on trail rides, keeps her reasonably cool. I can’t imagine folks on the Peninsula resorting to anything so untidy. A pretty parasol, maybe, but nothing so plain as a wet neck piece.

My dear former neighbour Hazel, who came from Saskatchewan, used to keep her vegetable garden from burning up by taking her hoe and stirring up the soil about an inch deep between rows in her vegetable garden.

This helped keep the still-damp soil underneath from drying out between watering. She always had a magnificent vegetable garden — productive, too!

If a really hot day is forecast, I find that by opening the doors in the early mornings and running a fan in the hallway close to an open door (facing into the room), it cools the place down. Close the doors as soon as the sun begins to heat things up outside and close the blinds that face south or west. This helps to keep your house cool. Well, maybe not cool exactly but cooler than it would be otherwise.

An air-conditioner is a big help but the other day with the air-conditioner (given to me by my kids) on high, it was still 82 degrees in the living room. It was hot!

If I had a choice between being hot or cold, I’d choose cold. You can always add a couple of sweaters and a coat if you are cold but even after you have shed all your clothes, there isn’t anything more to take off. You need your skin just to keep everything inside your miserably warm body.

Don’t get me wrong, now. I love summer!

 

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.

 

 

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