Tuesday, August 26, 2003

End of the Week of Sheets

Tonight is a normal San Francisco summer night. The fog has been rolling in from the west and swallowed the peaks and valleys all evening. A few hours earlier you could feel the chilly dampness as the fog mists over the peak of the hill I live on. Since I live near the top I can watch it slip around the North Slope as it continues west into the bay and Oakland. On the right sort of night it’s downright creepy. Ah, nature’s air conditioning is working again.

The past week I’ve been sleeping in sheets and fending off the new generation of mosquitoes that have been eating me alive every night. It was cool enough to sleep if I left the window open but then the critters get in. The next night I tried to sleep with the windows closed and ended up waking up in a sweat. Both stink. Before you, non-San Franciscans tell me about screen windows, let me explain why there are few of those here. According to the locals, there are no bugs here. And mostly they are correct.

Growing up in New York where summertime meant moths, Japanese beetles and june bugs hugging the screen door trying to get in, crickets and cicadas making their own special kind of white noise to fall asleep, fireflies lighting up the early evening hoping to pick up a firefly chica with their seductive glow. Here those bugs don’t really exist. I read something about insecticides being sprayed in the Bay Area and as a result there aren’t really any bugs here. Or maybe they just hate the fog? So as a result when you open the window, there is no mesh screen to keep things from flying into the house.

During the day it’s been hot, which is good for my tomatoes but bad for the rest of us who would prefer something less balmy. Saturday Cat was up and we went down to Palo Alto to stroll through their Art Festival. It was a nice drive down in the convertible and aside from the constant need to rehydrate ourselves it was a nice day. On the way back we got caught in traffic around candlestick park. At one point the driver in the car in front of us put something on his head that looked like horns.

We gave him the thumbs up since it seemed like a cool thing to do when bored in traffic. As we passed him we were able to get a quick glance at his horns before he took off for the 49ers game.

Sunday we met up with a bunch of friends in Napa. Ordinarily Napa Valley, like all valleys in California, is nice and warm. Great for the grapes y’know. But today it was unbearably hot. It was fun to see everyone and meet Kris, who is back in the area but working her tail off, but damn! it was too hot. It did allow us the opportunity to go back to San Francisco and feel that it was substantially cooler since we did have a somewhat cool breeze blowing.

Of course now that it’s cooler I’m losing all of my heat acclimation. I’m getting ready for a trip home to New York and a few days of cool weather may totally throw me off. I hope that this heat-wave thingie will sweep across the country before I get back East.

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