SD. Beautiful beaches, warm winters, temperate summers… until this week. 101 degrees in San Diego. 75% humidity. No air conditioning ANYWHERE.
We all know SD is full of microclimates. 101 in Poway or Chula Vista is understandable. 101 in view of the coast… unimaginable. Unless you are living in San Diego now.
Like almost all of West SD, we have no air conditioning. Even $2500/ mo apartments in Fancy La Jolla don’t have air conditioning. Why? Apparently “You really don’t need it” or so I’ve been told countless times since I moved to SD. And, maybe I need to get my hearing checked because I swear people have been telling me, “it’s only hot here one week a year”. I think they mean it’s only cold in the summer for one week a year.
Well I work from my air-conditionless hot home and until I installed an indoor thermometer I thought it was ME who was just too sensitive to the heat. Yesterday the high in my home was 95 degrees, with up to 75% humidity… inside my house! The overnight low was a freezing 82 degrees. Of course the famous cool SD ocean breeze is always helpful, but on the hottest days of the year I couldn’t be that lucky. It seems a cool breeze comes from the ocean wind on the pleasantly sunny days and the hot breeze comes from the east In fact, the strong warm winds from the east are called Santa Ana winds, a Spanish word referring to Saint Ann. However, when Santa Ana is said fast in Spanish, the words sounds more like Satana-meaning Satan. Today I feel Satan is exacting his revenge on me!
I tried to cool off with a cold shower. I turned on the cold sprocket, kept the hot one seal shut, and jumped in, anticipating a cool shock. Nope. The water pipes were warm, because the concrete and dirt are warm. Warm water pipes, warm water- an interior HOT SPRINGS.
I turn to my icemaker for relief… broken. The cool air from the fridge teases me. My kitty and I stand in front of Fridge with the doors open. My kitty jumps into the fridge. Kitty Move over- I want to sit inside the Fridge too!
That’s it! I’ve had it! 9pm and I’m drenched in sweat. Let’s go to home depot and buy a portable air conditioner. Oh it’s Sunday and they are closed. Monday morning, I wake up and read my indoor thermometer: Low last night- 81 degrees. Honey! Let’s go buy an air-conditioning unit NOW!!! We get to home depot and are told, “Air conditioners? We don’t have those. I don’t think anyone has them. Some customers have come in and told me they’ve been to many stores and no one carries them, especially in September. No one expects this Indian Summer.” So I go online and look for other stores- like their competitor Lowes. Here’s what I find
Knowing I’ll spend another day melting like Frosty the snowman, I look at the forecast and try to develop a plan. Perhaps I can do household chores while its still cool. Nope, it is 95 degrees by 10am. 0 chance of precipitation. Well, there’s a few stores I need to go to today, so hopefully they will give me a respite from the heat. First I went to a paint store… no air. Their indoor thermometer read over 90. Then I went to a machine shop orientation. 2 hours surrounded by hot tools, no windows and no air conditioning.
I want to escape to the mall but there’s only outdoor malls here. My hair dye is streaking down my face. Help!
Starbucks it is! So I’m typing this in Starbucks, after quite a bit of first standing and waiting for a table to open (others had the same idea as myself). I’m concentrated on my typing but I hear a commotion around me. I look around. The forecast was wrong- it’s raining! Hard. Sudden. Rain. Relief?! Rain in SD is rare. The little bit of rain we get comes in the winter and is cold. RELIEF!? God has forgiven me!
The drops bounce off the pavement. Palm trees sway as the wind increases. Lightening streaks the sky. Thunder, a sound I haven’t heard in months, nearly knocks the drink from my hand.
Within minutes, trees are falling, sirens are blaring, and roads are flooding.
Figure 1 Raining hard in San Diego Sudden Tropical Storm
I step outside of Starbucks, longing for the cool rain to soak my clothing. I step outside, the doors pull me hard as they get caught in the gust.
Damn, it’s still hot!