Sunday, October 3, 2010

PART ONE. "Weather Reports". Number Three

August 2010

I see online  that the temperature in Pittsburgh today  is supposed to reach a high of 84 degrees.
Here, we expect  98.
Right now,  noontime, the thermometer on my roof balcony reads 94.
I think we’ll reach 98.
But that’s okay.
Know why?
Because this isn’t  Pittsburgh.
Here, there doesn’t seem to be any  humidity.
It’s dry.
Really dry.
So a temperature forecast of 98 doesn’t seem so hot.
For sure, Shloimy, this is definitely not Pittsburgh.
You know what happens in Pittsburgh when it gets to 98 degrees?
You go out for a brief walk, and by the time you get back,  you feel as if you’ve taken a shower.
From the inside out.
With your clothes on.
But here, it’s so dry, you hardly sweat.
The air seems to suck the water right out of you, before you can begin to sweat.
I’ve been told to drink  100 ounces of water a day, or at the very least 2 litres—that’s something like 68 ounces.
Given how dry I feel with 75 ounces (right now, a newbie, I count my intake), I think that-- at least for a newcomer who is not yet acclimated to this kind of dry heat-- 68 ounces of water a day  is probably too low.
So I drink.

Bottled water.

And I drink.

Bottled grapefruit soft drink (I mix with water) .

And I drink some more.

I don't really drink this, but I wanted to show you what Hebrew Coca-Cola looks like.

And if you are really, really brave (I'm not), you can try to drink milk--the way the Israeli drinks it-

From a plastic bag!

Drinking milk from a plastic bag is like trying to nail jello to a tree.

And it's almost as much fun.

But this isn't the only thing I’ve discovered here in Maale Adumim.
I’ve also discovered the sun.
You didn’t know I could do that, did you?
Discover the what?
That’s right.
The sun.
Listen, Shloimy,
How many times do I have to tell you---
This is not Pittsburgh.
 This sun is no Pittsburgh sun.
No way.
It’s different.
Much brighter.

Look into the courtyard, to the right. Look how sharp and crisp the shadow lines are. And look at the front fascade of the building, behind the white car: the stone around the four windows appears almost white, right?

Well, the actual color is a very light beige.

That's how bright the sun is. It lightens color!
It's also hotter, Shloimy.

I’ve got a decent tan on my face from walking in Pittsburgh, but here, if I do not put on lotion, I will burn.
In fact, I put lotion on – and I still burn.
But I think I know the reason for that.
Last week,  I found SPF 30 suntan lotion on sale, half-off.
So I bought it.
Then, I found out why (probably) this stuff was half-off:
It’s not effective.
The sun is too bright, too hot for SPF 30.
How was I supposed to know?
I’m from Pittsburgh, remember?
This should be a lesson to you, Shloimy.
So you don’t get fried.
What, I have to teach you everything?

Frying  in the sun,


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