As I wrote about the other day – and as just about anyone in the UK already knows – this week has included the warmest June day in at least forty years, with Wednesday hitting 34.5°C (94°F) . As always, I know that people in other countries will be pissing themselves laughing at the way we’re unable to cope with temperatures at extremes (or at least what the UK sees as extremes) but that’s because for us they are extremes – and as such, we simply don’t have the infrastructure to cope with them.
We get hot periods during the summer, but we’ve not been this hot since 1976. So we don’t bother with air-conditioning in houses, or anything to deal with things like train rails expanding, tarmac melting etc. – because it only happens for small occasional periods, instead of months every year. It’s the same in Winter, if we end up with serious (for us) snow or freezing conditions – they don’t happen often, so we don’t invest in snowploughs, or underground systems like places that have deep snow for weeks and months on end.
Personally, I don’t mind warm (and even hot) days – but I hate hot nights. The other part of this week’s heat has been that there’s little to no breeze, so it’s been stifling and claggy at night, which makes it (for me) massively unpleasant. Indeed, on Wednesday night I even ended up giving up and going to sleep out in the garden instead, which helped a bit – although also resulted in interrupted sleep because of the cats.
In that context, it’s all made for what feels like a really long week…