I hear it's Very Hot (TM) in some parts right now! Allow someone who's been living in South Africa for over a decade to share some tips for dealing.
* Wet a teatowel and drape it over your neck
* Spray yourself with a water mist, better if you have a fan pointed at you
* Have a fan pointed at you
* Feet in a bowl of cold water
* Periodic short cold showers, focus on cooling your hot points - armpits, groin, head
* Take a long cold bath
@hephactus Do you have access to cold running water without it costing to much? And a bowl? The feet in cold water really *really* helps if you can manage that - or if not a bowl, have some water in the bathtub or even the sink to dunk your feet into occasionally. Also wetting a cloth and using it to dampen your skin down, rub it over your arms and legs and repeat as necessary.
@welshpixie thanks, I appreciate it. Electricity was out for a while, I was just ranting and waiting for it, I have used the wet towel method before, high temperature can be deadly sometimes 😳
@hephactus True! We often have loadshedding in South Africa where the struggling power company has to reduce demand, which means our power can be out for a few hours during the hottest time of day, so I've learned to cope, heh XD Hope you can cool down!
@welshpixie We're under a Heat Advisory because it's going to get up to... wait for it... 91F (32C).
Former Great Plains resident me is both amused by this (we had a couple weeks of 100+ every summer) and also is all okay yeah, I get it, it's bad when you're not acclimated to that. And also Philadelphia proper is (1) about ten degrees hotter, (2) rarely has air conditioning in rowhouses and (3) does not cool off at night which is what they say kills people.
@silverseams Yeah, we don't have aircon in our house, heh. Summers here are straight months of 30C+ with it not going much under 25 at night and occasional forays into over 40 (we're lucky we live on the coast - an hour inland it's closer to 45 constantly through summer), and the humidity is always over 60. I hatesss itttt
@welshpixie Yeah, that's more what Wichita was like. Philly brick rowhouses are great big thermal masses built for cold winters but mild summers and they kill four or five people every time we have weather like this. (Usually it's warmer but not as humid though; it's been 80%+ here and I miss having air with oxygen in it instead of water...)
We're out in the sprawling-detached-housing burbs so it's not as bad here, and we have central air.
@welshpixie Update: local National Weather Service office just referred to current weather (dew point in mid 70's) as "air you can wear." 😆😭
@welshpixie Also you left out the tip
* Make a pool out of construction barriers and vinyl billboard material
@welshpixie i just drink hot tea and don't move,
and i take hot showers
naps are also good
and a hat, if i have to go out, i bring my own shade!
@welshpixie why thank you!! it gets quite hot in the loft! (side note: every time someone mentions South Africa I think of the guy I met who would say "I'm from South Africa!" in that type of accent, I don't know what it's called)
@calculsoberic Afrikaans? :D
Unfortunately I live in the country that reminds me constantly of a guy once asking me if I have any South African in me, me naively saying no, and him following up with "Do you want some?" XD Worst pick-up line ever.
@calculsoberic I do, heh. I was about sixteen and was with the family at one of those Butlins-type holiday resort places where there are 'clubs' to keep the kids occupied and he was in the club. He was an absolute arrogant, smarmy cockwomble that year, but then was there again the year after and had entirely changed his ways and was very remorseful and kind.
@welshpixie Two more tips from someone who's lived in California their whole life:
* Cold canned beverages held against the inside of the elbow, under the arms, or against sides of the neck make for a phenomenal way to cool yourself rapidly, thanks to the conductivity of the metal and the concentrations of high-volume blood vessels in those areas. If this proves shocking, a towel or shirt wrapped around the can will help.
* Fill a cooler with ice, point a fan over the top of it in such a way the airflow just barely catches the cooler's rim. Congratulations, you've made an impromptu evaporative cooling device. Be aware that effectiveness will decrease as humidity climbs, and that more-involved construction methods are available.
If you have electricity at least some of the time, fill some 2L bottles with water and freeze them. (Remember to leave headroom for the ice to expand.) Wrap your new heat sink in a pillowcase or old T-shirt, and you can use it just like the above soda can. Or rest it in your lap while doing something else, or whatever.
I’ve cuddled one of those overnight, when it otherwise would’ve been too hot to sleep. Truly a lifesaver.
Ah, yes, it’s starting to come back to me now.
You’re going to sweat. A lot. If it’s not too humid, you’ll sweat even more without noticing it. And the human body gets pretty cranky if not given adequate salt—every bit as much as fluids—under those conditions.
I have woken out of a sound sleep with a desperate craving for salt because my body dipped below some threshold overnight. At that point, eating table salt straight tastes good. The body is prompt about letting you know when it’s had enough, but still. Do not recommend.
If you don’t have a choice about doing something physically strenuous in the heat, it’s important to give your body some support. In that vein, have a recipe for isotonic rehydration solution.
* 2 cups (scant 500mL) water
* 1/4 tsp. table salt
* 3 level tsp. sugar
Adding a twist of citrus or a splash of lemon juice improves the taste a good bit. Don’t skip the sugar, either. It helps your body absorb the other stuff.
@welshpixie I was in Death Valley once when it hit 119 degrees F = 48.3 degrees C. Just indescribably hot. They're expected to break 120 this week. A good deal of the desert southwest US may set all time records this week. I wonder how much of the western US is going to burn this year? We had record fires last year.
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