As I turned the calendar page this morning I felt a sigh of relief that the hot days of July are behind us. The drought and 100+ days are beginning to have serious effects on every living thing. Plants and animals are suffering and people are getting weary. I know we will have the hot days of August ahead of us now, but there is still the sense that “this too shall pass” and a reprieve is also ahead somewhere. We can only hope.
Severe weather always causes me a little shame too. Who am I to complain when I have so many comforts and conveniences? My parents and grandparents coped with similar conditions without air-conditioned cars or homes. Many public buildings weren’t air conditioned either. I recall many a Sunday sermon preached over the noisy rhythm of oscillating fans and hand-held paper fans. My grandmother often carried a folding fan in her purse.
And standards of dress were much more modest in previous generations. People faced the heat with skirts and sleeves and hose and shoes, not near nakedness. My parent’s generation didn’t need a lot of sunscreen because they didn’t show that much skin! I’ve seen people in Wal-Mart lately in outfits I wouldn’t wear to the beach.
The news recently reported the death of a man found in a home without electricity or water. Another reminder that I don’t have the right to complain.
So I try to have hope and faith that our weather will return to milder conditions soon and I try not to give in to self-pity. But I think these photos that I took yesterday tell a sad story.