It’s not the heat . . . it’s the really high air temperatures.
I was born in the middle of winter. I grew up in the middle of winter. And about ten years ago, I moved to Austin, Texas in the middle of winter. I don’t like being cold and once I got to Austin all I could think of was, “What took me so long?”
It was wonderful living in an area that got one inch of snow every twenty years instead of one inch of snow an hour. The winters were as mild and the summers were warm. And if it ever got too warm, you could always cool yourself off by jumping naked into the neighbor’s pool when they weren’t looking.
It was fun for a few years, but now . . . well, I’m not so sure. It may just be coincidence that my infatuation with hot weather ended when my car’s air conditioning went out three or four years ago. But that’s also when it started getting really hot.
It’s no news that Austin has now experienced the hottest summer on record, breaking the number of triple digit days set back in 1925. The problem with this statistic is it makes it seem like everything’s been mild and normal for eighty-six years and now it suddenly got really hot again. It ignores the fact that the top ten list of hottest summers also contains 2009, 2008, 2006, 2001, and 2000.
We got a break yesterday when clouds moved in for the first time in (what felt like) decades. But our brief respite is over. Today, Friday, August 26, 2011, should be our seventy-first day of triple-digit temps. And the forecast for this weekend calls for 109°F both days with no end in sight. In fact, here’s the six week forecast, taking us well into October: