Jack Simpson

Jack Simpson

Baby, it has been hot out there and how I once thought I could live without air conditioning in the whole house, I’ll never know!

In the parking lot of a local grocery store, I reached for the handle of my car door and it felt like I put my hand on a stove top. I unlocked the car to enter and was greeted by a blast of hot air that took my breath away.

My lunch chocolate treat the waitress gave me when I paid my check had melted in my pocket; and, in reaching for my car key, I got a mess of gooey chocolate candy!

I knew when I left the comfort of my air conditioning that it wasn’t going to be pleasant in 90-plus-degree heat. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration had already proclaimed July 2019 as the hottest month in history since they started keeping records. Holy cow, what was I doing out in such discomfort anyway. Who are we going to blame for this? President Trump? No, we have to blame ourselves for burning fossil fuels, for one thing.

So, I guess we grin and bear our discomfort. We do our outdoor chores early or late in the day. We hug the old easy chair and keep that air conditioning running while we sip plenty of cold drinks and water during the heat of the day. We do our best to keep from sweltering.

Or, we book a flight to South America, where it is now wintertime. Put the thermostat on “glacial,” turn on the ceiling fans, buy some popsicles while out shopping and read a book on ice fishing in the far North.

Turn on the television and watch all the sad stories from the Bahamas following Hurricane Dorian. See what real discomfort is and thank the good Lord for being able to live in the USA, where air conditioning, fans, well-insulated homes, etc., make life so much better than those searching the rubble for whatever might be left after Dorian, a tragedy of unimagined magnitude.

We may think we have it rough, but others have a much harder time with Mother Nature and the weather.

Jack Simpson is a former educator, a veteran, an author and a law enforcement officer. His column appears each week in the weekend edition of this newspaper.