Thursday, August 18, 2005

Not Quite So Hot

Apparently (hopefully) we are over the heat hump, although it's still routinely hitting around 120 degrees. One thing about the heat that I think I forgot to mention: since our water tanks are on the roof, we have no cold water by the afternoon, since the sun bakes the cold water tank until it's hot. Often for a shower, we don't turn anything on but the cold, since that's plenty hot. But that means the hot water tank sits there all day getting hotter and hotter, so hot as a matter of fact that sometimes you can't even touch the hot water faucet handle because it's gotten so hot. Either the hot water or the pipe for it at this point could seriously burn you.

But we have seen a few nice 'cool' days that have only hit 110 and it seems to be getting a good deal more breezy, which certainly helps. When it was hitting 125+ at the height of summer, there was NO breeze, ever. The Iraqis have a name for the hottest part of the year, although I've of course forgotten it. Essentially the days between July 10 and August 20 or so are considered the 'hot forty' or something like that, the hottest days of the summer.

One night patrol a few days ago reminded me of that first warm spring day in Boston, sort of. It was probably the first really cool night (by 'cool' I mean lower-90's or so, but yet breezy) and it seemed like EVERYONE was out. Kids were out playing, adults out shopping, people riding bikes, or just reclining on what grass they could find in the larger traffic circles (since there are no real parks here, per se).

While this city is otherwise nothing like Boston, it reminded me of that first warm spring day when the bitter cold, wet New England winter weather has finally, hopefully, broken and everyone is just so happy to get out for a little while and soak up the sun. Suddenly the bikes appear along the Esplanade, a few sailboats appear on the Charles River, and it seems like everyone is out, just walking around and happy to be able to be outside again. Kirkuk that night was like that, except they were celebrating the return of cooler weather, not hot.
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