This heat of C37 is now sapping all the words. I can feel them draining down my legs melting onto the floor, seeping down the stairs and ending up, totally shambled around a battery of whirring fans. Yesterday we had the good fortune of locking ourselves up in the comforts of our air-conditioned car. We drove to Canberra to re-new a passport at the Embassy. It took us just seven seconds to run from the coolness of our car, through the C39 throbbing heat in Canberra to the air-conditioned comfort of the Embassy.
The night just passed, was all sweat rock and roll. No passing of cooling breeze, just the pitiful sounds of maddening insects hurling themselves against the fly-screens of the bedroom windows, all opened in foolish anticipation of relief.. Sheets all tangled between clammy legs, like Dutch-wives. (The term ‘Dutch Wife’ or the Indonesian ‘Guling Belanda’ originates from early Dutch colonial times and refers disparagingly to a roll of bedding that is kept between the legs during hot tropical nights. I’ll let you decide on why this roll of bedding became a term of derision. The Dutch in Indonesia were sometimes seen as haughty and their broad-bottomed wives as being cold.
On the way back home we stopped mid-way and had a late lunch. The streets were mostly deserted. The bitumen highway on the way home a simmering black coated Sahara. No fata morgana nor beckoning oasis. What about the garden, the garden? No storm predicted. Those that were predicted in the previous week had eluded our town to such a degree, people were now shaking their fists at the dark but rainless clouds. Coarse oaths were renting the still hot air.
The geraniums defiant though. It just shows that in times of despair one can rely on the geranium. “No good watering now, it will scorch the bay leave trees, oh look at our hydrangeas, all dry and forlorn. They will have to wait till dark, you do the back and I’ll do the front.” Such unity in times of crisis. For dinner we re-heated a magic chicken risotto that Helvi had made some time ago.
The heat did not subside and all we could do was to sit spread-eagled in front of the fans which we had put on the fastest speed possible. One is an evaporative fan. It blows air through water and is supposed to work better. We were beyond caring, and just drank water mixed with a little red wine ( reward), and did nothing much more than look at each other and supress sighing with repeatedly saying to each other; “isn’t it hot?”
What else could we do?
It is hot!