We were watching the Weather Channel last night when a statistic brought both my spouse and I to full attention.
Ft. Smith, Arkansas reached 115 degrees yesterday.
We lived in Arkansas some 30 years ago (back when Bill Clinton was governor-yes, we had the chance to vote for him. And had drivers licenses with his signature, perhaps. In fact, we lived in Fayetteville, Arkansas for a brief time, and maybe not that far from where Bill Clinton lived in the 1970's.
I've wanted to go back for a long time. But not right now.
Arkansas gets hot. It can get humid. But it doesn't go over 100 in the Fayetteville area all that much.
On Tuesday, Fayetteville reached 108, breaking their previous record for August. (Their all time record was in July of 1954-and don't be surprised if it doesn't get broken soon.)
Meanwhile, for us, it was cloudy, rainy - with a high of 78 at our house.
Aren't things just slightly unbalanced? Not just for us - we got close to 100 two weeks ago - but for the entire country. We get rain and weather in the 70's and almost everyone else is baking.
I think, while we lived in Arkansas, it reached over 100 a couple of times. In 1985, I seem to recall a September when we had a heat wave. We sat under a tree near the chicken coop with some iced tea and watched the chickens try to keep cool.
Remembering how the farmers market vendors sweltered two Fridays ago in that parking lot in Centreville, VA makes me feel for all the people in the affected hot/drought areas. I thought we had it bad in Wichita, Kansas (without air conditioning) when we lived there in 1980 and we ended up with....well, they may exceed those records this year, too.
Right now I am grateful for living here in Binghamton, New York. In fact....why don't we give our little city a tourism boost? Escape the Heat! Experience the Forgotten Feelings of Rain. We could make a fortune.
But, just wait for winter.