Yes, living in a hundred-year old house has its pleasures. The house has character, from the hobbit-hole window to the beautiful hardwood floors to the balconies and porches. Unfortunately, living here also has its problems.

Take the weather, for example. I’ve already written about fighting the rain — both flooding and leaks in the attic — but fighting the heat can be just as challenging. Our home sometimes seems like an oven.

Yesterday Kris and I fled to the movies to escape the heat. (We saw the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie, which isn’t very good. It doesn’t make much sense. Anthony Lane’s review is pretty good.) Today we enjoyed an air-conditioned restaurant (and a bad meal) and some time in the mall. You know things are bad if I’m going to a mall.

It’s too hot upstairs for me to sleep, so I’m bedding down on the love seat in the parlor. This isn’t ideal. Unless you’re a mosquito. In that case, it’s as close to ideal as you’re ever going to find: a large, juicy man full of sugar. Yum. Why not bite him? Many times.

My feet and legs itch like crazy from all the bites. I’ve applied calamine lotion, but so far it hasn’t worked worth beans. The ball of my left foot is so swollen that when I walk, it feels like I’ve got a stone in my foot.

Kris is taking a long-term approach to the heat. She’s decided that maybe we could plant a tree in the yard, preferably a fast-growing shade tree. She spent an hour tonight making a list: sycamore, chestnut, oak, hawthorne, etc. etc. Of course, the tree solution won’t help us for, oh, maybe five or ten years, even if we plant it this fall. But still, it’s a start.

Now it’s time to go apply some mosquito repellant.

2 Replies to “The War Against the Heat”

  1. mrs darling says:

    You know when we were there a couple of weeks ago I noticed how cool your house was. Some of us discussed the fact that you must have central air. We were kinda surprised condisdering the age of the house but it was so cool we thought you HAD to have the air conditioner running.I briefly pitied you the bill from that weekend, if that were the case(all the kids running in and out) but nevertheless, we all assumed you had central air put in. On the way home Greg asked me if you had put the air in the house or if it came with it. I wasnt sure. Now I know that it was neither! You dont have any air at all. Boy you could have fooled me. Your house was amazingly cool. Of course it wasnt a hundred degrees that day either!

  2. Lee says:

    dab some rubbing alcohol on your bites. works much better than calamine lotion.

    I was in your neck of the woods this weekend but I never knew that it could reach 105 degrees in Portland (ok, Beaverton).

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