5 Kalimat 165 (B.E.) Baha’i Calendar
Soundtrack in my head: School of Fish, “3 Strange Days”
I got home today and my co-op house was unusally dark, even though it was 5:30 in the afternoon. Curtains were drawn, and bedsheets covered many window that didn’t otherwise have windows.
I walked into the kitchen and sure enough, on the whiteboard was written in big letters “CAVE DAY!” and underneath, it said, “Temperature 87 degrees, humidity 67%.” Yes, the alert had been officially sounded.
We had a discussion at our last house meeting over the best way to keep the house cool. Some people are inclined to open all the windows and leave the fans running full blast, while others take the “cave approach” and close all the windows, draw the shades, and block as much sunlight from coming into the house as possible. One housemate even has something called a “window quilt” which is designed to insulate the window on extreme cold days and hot days.
Excuse the pun, but I’ve gradually warmed to the “cave approach.” I have usually been a fresh air fanatic. But after experimenting a little bit, I realize that my room in the co-op house is significantly cooler–maybe as much as ten degrees cooler–when I take this approach.
For it to work, it has to be relatively cool overnight–something in the 60 degree range is great. So at night, I open the window and turn on the fan full blast. When I wake up in the morning I find myself feeling quite chilly. So I close the window to retain the cool air. When I come home at night, it is noticeably cooler.
For it to work in our house, pretty much all of us had to be on board. Two people asked if they could leave their room windows open to let in fresh air, and we decided that wouldn’t negatively affect our house cooling efforts. One house member was appointed to be the “Cave Day Coordinator,” whose job would be to alert the house on very hot and humid days and officially declare a “cave day.”
I actually had thought seriously about buying an air conditioner–not only for my comfort, but for my allergies. My allergies were noticeably worse between August and October of last year. But I suspect that my avoidance of grains since the beginning of the year will do more to reduce my allergy symptoms than an air conditioner might. I’m definitely allergic to wheat, and I’m definitely sensitve to other grains as well. Also, I spend the work day in an air-conditioned office, and am often not home. I rarely have trouble sleeping due to the heat. And since I now own a laptop computer, I can go to a nearby cafe if need be and do my work.
So I figured I’d try to tough it out one more summer and see how I do. Realize, of course, that this is Madison, Wisconsin, not Madison, Alabama.