7 Jul 2015
For weeks now, the daytime temperatures have been hovering around 85 or 90F; if you're outside the United States, that's above 30C. The average for the Pacific Northwest in late June: 70F/21C.
I mean, summer doesn't start for real until after Fourth of July, which is often cool and overcast with sprinkles. We have words to describe what it usually does for a big chunk of the month: June Gloom, or when it's really overcast and chilly, Juneuary.
No Juneuary this year, not even a nice June. Do not pass go, do not collect $100, skip directly to the hottest week of the year. And stay there. This after not really having a winter either. If we had June, it might've been in March.
All my rhythms are broken. All the plants that I measure spring and summer by are off. The daffodils and tulips came up before I was ready, so too the lilacs. The radishes had already bolted before I got to eat them. There's an organic farm at the college where I work: a guy at the farm stand said that everything is four to five weeks early. I missed strawberry season, and I bought zucchini in June, when usually I'm gorging on it in August.
The grasses that go brown at midsummer have already gone over, and nearly every day I see something about a grass fire by the highway. North of us, fires rage in British Columbia, and a fire east of the mountains destroyed 29 homes. Everything early, everything off-kilter.
On top of the fretting in the back of my mind about OMGWTFBBQ GLOBAL WARMING, I'm freaking out about how much I'm not getting done.
I always have a bunch of projects that I swear, for real this time, I'm going to get done once it stops raining. Sometimes the weather is an excuse, but never this early in the year, and rarely for this long.
Pulling together the emotional and mental fortitude to tackle what needs to be done is hard enough. "Tomorrow is forecast to be warmer than today" and last night I couldn't sleep. I wash dishes early in the morning and I'm already sweating. How do I tackle the hard stuff?
And my rhythms aren't built around the weather being this hot for this long. When I was a kid in southern California, we had a rhythm of how to get at least a little bit of yardwork done, when to do errands, and when to just lay low. Twenty-odd years in a climate with at most three days a year over 90F reset all that. And our longer days further north mean that even those patterns don't make as much sense. So I'm tired and irritable and angry, all while being too damn hot.
I haven't figured out how to deal with it yet. I just come home and throw open all the windows, turn on all the fans, get a cold drink, and worry.