OMG! Oh, the heat here in Western Oregon. Why, oh my my my, it got to 93 degrees here in Salem a few days ago. Well, maybe it was 95.
I can't remember exactly. This senior citizen has been too busy land paddling his longboard skateboard five miles around the up-and-down trails at Minto Brown Park in 90-degree weather.
Takes me 40 to 45 minutes. Halfway through my workout I stop for a minute and take a few sips of water. Then I get back on my longboard.
I grew up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. From June through August, or so, it was over one hundred degrees most days. As a kid I rode my three-speed bike all over the hilly roads of Three Rivers, California.
Don't remember taking along a water bottle. Also don't remember many people complaining about the heat. It was just something that was there, something you accepted.
I'm amazed at what heat-weenies most Oregonians who live in the Willamette Valley are. When it gets into the 90's, folks in western Oregon act as if they're stranded in the middle of the Sahara with no camel and no oasis.
The evening news on the Portland TV stations carries warnings about drinking lots of water, keeping pets indoors, watching out for elderly people. Guess that includes me, since I'm almost 65.
Well, I invite you to watch me... exercising for miles and miles in the middle of the day when the temperature is a pleasingly mild (to us ex-Californians) mid-90's.
When I got to the parking lot at Minto Brown Island Park I expected to find it full of cars. After all, this was a sunny clear late June day. But no, Oregon's heat-weenies apparently were staying inside in some air-conditioned safe room.
Today I went into a downtown Salem Starbucks before my 4:30 pm Tai Chi class to get my usual grande hot brewed coffee. Glancing at the labels on the coffee machine, I said "Well, I guess I'll have a Pike Place or... a Pike Place."
"Sorry," I was told. "When it is hot like this we usually only have one kind of brewed coffee, no light or dark blends. Most people want an iced drink."
Geez! It was in the 80's today! That IS NOT HOT! Hot is 110 degrees. Or the 129 degrees I think Death Valley reached recently. A day in the 80's is temperate, Oregonians.
Drink your hot coffee. Downsize the giant water jugs you carry to get you through a short stroll in the park. Sit outside (with sun screen on). Embrace the sun and heat while we have it.
All too soon Oregon's heat-weenies will be complaining about the cold -- when it gets into the 40's -- and the snow -- when we get a sprinkling of half an inch. I enjoyed chatting with a clerk at a store who had moved here from Colorado about a year ago. She had the same opinion of most Oregonians as I do.
"In Colorado we get real heat and real snow," she said. "People here have no idea... no idea."