Dolce far niente

It’s official, we’re enduring a heat wave similar to that of 2003, La Grande Canicule, which this time is appropriately called Lucifer. The problem with heatwaves is that it’s too hot to do much of anything, particularly housework. Iron a few garments and you’ve worked up enough sweat to re-soak said items. Sweep the floor and within seconds you’re perspiring all over the floor. Well, that’s my excuse for taking a rain check on housework. A few hours in the office, and you slump across the desk.

When it’s really hot you feel languid, as if everything’s just too much effort. Now, unlike my two sisters, I’m not one for sunbathing. I last about 30 minutes in the sun. I get bored lying still and doing nothing. While the cool waters of our pool beckon, it’s even hotter beside the pool as it’s sheltered from what little breeze is around. Plus, at this time of year, it’s pretty busy. My beloved prefers to swim either when it opens, or just before it closes. I prefer to sit outside, in the shade, while carrying on with a few chores, maybe read a book or just sit back and enjoy the scenery. I regularly return to the kitchen to check on whatever I have simmering on the hob or cooking in the oven. Plus, I can throw another pile of clothes into the washing machine. I find it hard to do absolutely nothing but have scaled back during the heat wave which looks to continue.

Fortunately, if we open all the windows in the apartment we can enjoy the slight through breeze. While I’m not a fan of air conditioning, just getting into the car and turning it on is blissful. As is turning the hairdryer on full-blast, cold to cool the sweat pouring from my brow after just brushing my teeth.

Yesterday, I relaxed on the balcony, in the shade, where there was a mere hint of a welcome breeze. The cicadas were rubbing their legs together to no avail. It’s the omnipresent sound of summer which typically dies down at night, but not this year. Those poor insects have been at it night and day. I sympathise, not even the linen sheets are cool but that could be because of the heat being given off by my beloved on the far side of the bed. Heat that’s welcome in winter but not now. I keep conjuring up scenes from that 1980s film Body Heat where Kathleen Turner and William Hurt cooled down in a bath full of ice cubes but the ice cube maker on the fridge-freezer isn’t working!

Early this morning we awoke to thunder and lightning, but no rain. That arrived later. It poured, but not for long, and 30 minutes later everything was dry. The thirsty earth had sucked up every drop of available moisture and the rain merely conditions more humid. There was nothing for it, we’d have another lazy day, pottering around the flat and watching the MotoGP from Brno. Not that we need any excuse to watch sport!