We’re in the middle of a heat wave in Virginia, even in the Shenandoah Valley where it’s generally cooler than the flat lands to the east.
While out and about in the heat and humidity that began last week, it’s easy to avoid the oppressive high temps by ducking inside. I ate lunch in an air conditioned restaurant. I drove my air conditioned vehicle. I returned home to my comfortable, air conditioned home.
Thank you, Willis Haviland Carrier (November 26, 1876 – October 7, 1950), the American engineer who invented air conditioning.
Our house was less than two years old when we bought it in 1997. Like many houses in the Shenandoah Valley, it didn’t have air conditioning because the horribly hot heat of summer is usually brief around here so those without tough it out.
We went through our first summer in the house with a stretch of triple digit temps so we found creative ways to stay cool with our two children who were 13 and 9 years old at the time. We went to the mall, took lunch and spent the day at a nearby lake, met friends at the movies, enjoyed long afternoons in the public library, and trekked to the mountains for a picnic.