Along the Trail of the Lonesome Wine
Stolen Sunday

Heat and Humidity

It's plenty hot around here, but the next couple of days promise to be real cookers -- highs at or over 100 with heat indices around 110.

Oh goody.

We had a taste of this atmospheric soup back in late May, but the rest of this summer has not been all that bad. Seriously -- compared to last summer, it's been a delightful season. Every time we hit the mid- or upper 90s, it was only for a day, maybe two, followed by quick cool downs and drops in humidity. So we've been getting by pretty well.

You see, our A/C is busted and we need to replace it. We've gotten one estimate -- $6,000 -- and that was back in May. Now that we have the scratch to get it fixed, we're getting a couple more estimates. And hopefully, in a week or so, we'll be nice and cool once again.

When I was a kid, we had no air conditioning. We had fans, and the woods, and the neighborhood pool. Mom made light dinners and Pop grilled. We ate out on the patio. Pop switched to iced coffee and Mom drank iced tea. We guzzled red Kool-Aid and Fizzies, and waited for the popsicle man.

In the evening we caught lightning bugs in jars and then let them loose to light up the night. On the Fourth of July, Pop brought each of us a box of fireworks -- my brother got a bigger box because he was older, and he also got to hold the Roman candles and set off the fountains. My sister and I got to light our sparklers and weave light trails into the darkness.

Mom made our beds upside down, so that our heads were at the foot of the beds, right next to the window, the better to catch the cooling air.

Pop and Mom finally installed window A/C units in the house -- big ones in the dining room, living room, and Gramma's room; smaller ones in the bedrooms. Summer suddenly got noisier, but a lot cooler!

Nostalgia is great. I'll happily reminisce any time -- especially when the A/C's on.

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