I’ve occasionally joked that those of us in the Pacific Northwest are a tad temperature sensitive when it’s either 75 and above, or 35 and below. We don’t do extremes. (For those of you with particular political bends concerning the PNW, insert snark here.) And as someone who grew up where it’s hotter in the summer and colder in the winter, Colorado, I get the jibes.
It was legitimately hot here. And it’s not even July!
In normal times, or way back when, those of us in the Puget Sound would look longingly at the calendar and the very important date of July 5th. Why? Because patriotism aside (Which has nothing to do with this anyway), summer, defined by sunshine and temps above 65, invariably waited till the 5th to show up. While the rest of the country was well into their summer ways, we were waiting for the marine layer to be pushed aside by a high ridge of pressure just off the coast so we could have some summer too.
This year, summer came with a vengeance. I’ve been here nearly 40 years and it’s never gotten this hot, and it turns out we set an all time high for temperature ever recorded. As far as I know, we have never been hotter than Phoenix. Now we can say that’s not true. (Why I remember the heat dome of 2021 as if it were yesterday…)
As you might imagine, we’re not set up for this much heat. In fact the last time we hit 100 was back in the lazy days of ’09. And a great many of us do not have AC because, for the most part, we don’t need it. Except when we do. Like when it got to 103 in the shade, as the above photo attests.
You might also note the indoor temp was 88. Why? Big trees and insulation. Even better was the lower level of the house…
…Which was a very comfortable 75.
This allowed me and my better half to experience the heatdome in our own particular way. Too hot? Go outside where it’s even hotter. This was useful after coming from the cool, cool downstairs and finding it too hot upstairs. All of which allowed us to both survive and perhaps have a little fun along the way while fervently wishing it would go back to normal. Which it did, surprisingly, 2 days later.
That will allow us to go back to our being too hot when the temperature gets above 80.
©2021 David William Pearce