Wednesday, July 14, 2021

In A Relationship With My Air Conditioner


You may have noticed, at least I hope you did, that I missed my post two weeks ago. I was out of town for the first time in a year and a half. For my first trip outside of Los Angeles County where did I choose to go? Seattle, which experienced record high temperatures while I was there. On the hottest day it was 110-115 degrees F depending on where you were in the area. That is not, let me repeat NOT, normal for the area at any time of year. A couple lanes of I-5 had to be shut down because the pavement buckled. It took a few hours to straighten that out. 

Mt. Rainier

It was incredibly hot in my mother’s house. We played games like taking an indoor thermometer around various parts of the house and seeing which room was the hottest. One of the upstairs rooms won at 105 degrees F. That wasn’t even on the hottest day. We pretty much didn’t want to know what it was on that day. We also visited various stores, noting which ones had the best air conditioning. Big Lots and JoAnn were the clear winners here.

I was going to put candy outside and see how long it took to melt, but I was just too hot to care. Besides, the local news did a number of experiments for us. They noted how long it took shredded cheese, an ice cream sandwich and various other things like that to melt. I believe it was 90 minutes, longer than I expected. They also tried baking chocolate chip cookies on a tray on the dashboard of a car. That was a several hour project, but was reasonably successful.

Fans and portable air conditioners were pretty much nowhere to be found. Luckily, my mother had one of those units you put in a window so that kept one room of the house down to a mere 80 degrees during the day. Needless, to say, we didn’t do much outside except in the early morning. One of the items we saw on Facebook was someone from the area declaring they were in a relationship with their air conditioner. Hence, the title of this post.

I’m still glad I made the trip. We were there for my mom’s 99th birthday and had a very nice visit. Just wish it hadn’t been quite so hot. The mountain was out for almost the entire week we were there. That’s Mt. Rainier for those who don’t know what that phrase means. It’s 66 miles from Kent, where I was, but is visible from there something like 90 days a year. Couldn’t find the statistic, but that’s in the ball park.

We flew from LAX to Sea-Tac, which was an interesting experience. I was a little nervous about getting on a plane. Didn’t need to show proof of vaccination or get a COVID test. Every seat was taken and everyone had to wear a mask for the entire trip as well as in the airport. That turned out to be not as bad as I expected. It was a pleasant flight both ways. On the trip back to LAX, Los Angeles required that we fill out an online form basically acknowledging L.A.’s rules once we got home. When they first started that, it was to make sure that people knew there was a 14-day self-quarantine period. But, when we flew, that quarantine period had gone away and we just acknowledged that, since we were both fully vaccinated, that we would monitor ourselves for symptoms.

California had fully opened when we left, which meant that all restaurants could be at full capacity and vaccinated people didn’t need to wear masks inside or outside except on public transportation. Washington state didn’t fully open until the day we left there, but they were pretty open when we were there. I admit it felt a little odd not wearing a mask in a store, but somehow not as odd as if I’d been in my home state.

All in all, it was a great trip. I’m glad we went, but I’m very glad to get back to more reasonable temperatures. 


In other news, for those of you who are attending More Than Malice, I’ll be participating in the author speed-dating event on Thursday, July 15, 4 pm Pacific/7pm Eastern. The event lasts an hour. I don’t know exactly where I’ll be in the lineup, but I’ll have 1 minute to tell everyone about my books. I’ve done this in person, which is incredibly tiring because you’re basically doing your spiel in a noisy, crowded room 20 times. This seems easier. Just hoping the internet gods smile kindly on my connection.

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